3D printing for bio-synthetic biliary stents

Christen J. Boyer, Moheb Boktor, Hrishikesh Samant, Luke A. White, Yuping Wang, David H. Ballard, Robert C. Huebert, Jennifer E. Woerner, Ghali E. Ghali, Jonathan S. Alexander

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Three-dimensional (3D) printing is an additive manufacturing method that holds great potential in a variety of future patient-specific medical technologies. This project validated a novel crosslinked polyvinyl alcohol (XL-PVA) 3D printed stent infused with collagen, human placental mesenchymal stem cells (PMSCs), and cholangiocytes. The biofabrication method in the present study examined 3D printing and collagen injection molding for rapid prototyping of customized living biliary stents with clinical applications in the setting of malignant and benign bile duct obstructions. XL-PVA stents showed hydrophilic swelling and addition of radiocontrast to the stent matrix improved radiographic opacity. Collagen loaded with PMSCs contracted tightly around hydrophilic stents and dense choloangiocyte coatings were verified through histology and fluorescence microscopy. It is anticipated that design elements used in these stents may enable appropriate stent placement, provide protection of the stent-stem cell matrix against bile constituents, and potentially limit biofilm development. Overall, this approach may allow physicians to create personalized bio-integrating stents for use in biliary procedures and lays a foundation for new patient-specific stent fabrication techniques.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number16
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2019


  • 3D printing
  • Hepatobiliary stent
  • Medical device
  • Personalized medicine
  • Stem cells
  • Tissue engineering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering


Dive into the research topics of '3D printing for bio-synthetic biliary stents'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this