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3D Printed Stent May Soon Give Hope to Esophageal Cancer Patients

by • January 19, 2016 • No Comments

fauPretty much equiteone I understand, myself included, has lost a fewone to cancer, many of them far too young. Finding a cure for cancer is the lofty, ultimate goal for medical researchers, and individuals like to fantasize of the day when the headline suddenly seems in the paper: “Cure for Cancer Found!” No additional deaths of the disease, no additional painful, drawn-out treatments – just a shot or a pill that can eliminate cancer as easily as clearing up an ear infection.

In reality, can it take place like that? It many likely won’t be that effortless – cancer is a complex beast, and there are so many various forms with their own one-of-a-kind complexities that a universal, one-off cure is a complex proposition. But, a lot of promising new turn it intoments do point to a near next in that treatment is much additional effective and deaths much additional rare. And a lot of those turn it intoments involve 3D printing.

ds00500_im03992_c7_esophagealstentthu_jpgNo cancer is amusing, but a few are much simpler to treat than others. Certain types of cancers tend to come with a dire prognosis, and esophageal cancer is one of those. It is the eighth many common type of cancer in the world, but it’s frequently detected late, and it’s quite complex to operate on; in fact, 50 to 60 percent of patients with the disease are ineligible for surgery. Those patients are frequently treated with the surgical implantation of a stent, that is turn it intod of a metal mesh and can cause numerous complications such as bleeding, perforation or tumor ingrowth.

It is not a cure; it manyly assists to store the esophagus open, but a new turn it intoment of Florida Atlantic University may eliminate the risk of complications and actively treat the tumor as well. Dr. Yunqing (Kevin) Kang, assistant professor of biomaterials and regenerative medicine in FAU’s Department of Ocean and Mechanical Engineering, has newly succeded in a $141,743 grant to additional turn it into a biodegradable, 3D printed polymer stent that can not just avoid the complications of metal stents but in addition assist as a drug deliquite system.

“Currently, there are no stents that are on the market in a clinical setting that have the capacity of preventing or decreasing the complications, and at the same time providing the capcapacity of bringing cancer therapy drugs,” said Dr. Kang. “Because our materials can be turn it intod of biodegradable polymer, they can dissolve and disappear after the stent is surgically placed into the patient’s esophagus. Once treatment is accomplished, it won’t be necessary for the surgeon to remove the stent, producing the system and treatment much additional effortless for the patient.”


Dr. Yunqing Kang. (Image: Florida Atlantic University)

The tissue-engineered stent can be turn it intod to release paclitaxel, a commjust utilized anti-cancer drug that can locally attack the tumor. Dr. Kang and his team can use 3D printing to turn it into the stent, that can be rigid adequate to hold its shape but flexible adequate to expand and contract along with the esophagus. Dr. Kang, who began working at FAU in 2014, has been studying tissue engineering and cancer drug deliquite systems for his entire career. His work at the university has been focutilized on the turn it intoment of biomaterials for bone tissue regeneration, as well as novel drug deliquite systems.

Esophageal cancer cells (Reuters)

“Dr. Kang’s innovation is a game changer for how esophageal cancer may be treated in the next,” said Mohammad Ilyas, PhD, Dean of FAU’s College of Engineering and Computer Science. “The physiochemical, drug-release and biocompatibility properties of this stent may have a wider impact on the treatment of esophageal cancer and the require for tissue-engineered stents for esophagus regeneration after surgical removal.”

It is not a cure for cancer, but thinking that it may drastically improve the prognosis of those suffering of one of the many complex-to-treat cancers, it’s a leading step forward. And that is how pervasive diseases are frequently eliminated – one step at a time. What are your thoughts on this new device? Discuss in the 3D Printed Stent for Esophageal Cancer forum over at 3DPB.com.