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|1. (WO2018104537) 3D PRINTING AND DRUG DELIVERY|
|Inventors:||CONNOLLY, Michael Leo
HARPER, Mhairi Malone
IRVINE, Eleanore Jane
|Title:||3D PRINTING AND DRUG DELIVERY|
A 3D structure of a hydrogel for supporting cell growth or for use in sustained drug delivery is formed using peptides and/or peptide derivatives that self- assemble via cross-linking into a stiff gel. The hydrogel structure is formed using a method based on 3D printing. A hydrogel precursor is extruded under conditions to generate a hydrogel, by extruding a solution of the peptides into a solution containing cations, whereby the cations enable cross-linking of pi- stacked peptides, or by co-extruding it with the cations, the peptides and cations being mixed only at the point of co-extrusion. The stiffness of the hydrogel can be tuned by adjusting the combination of peptides, either by the selection of peptides or combinations thereof, or the proportions of the combinations, and/or by adjusting the proportion of cations present.