Biodegradable Craniofacial Prostheses will be developed at ODTÜ !

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Biodegradable Craniofacial Prostheses will be developed at ODTÜ !

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Founding Director of ODTÜ Center of Excellence in Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering (BIOMATEN) Prof. Vasıf Hasırcı and BTech Innovation firm at ODTÜ Teknokent have agreed to develop biodegradable craniofacial prostheses to be used in the treatment of 3D defects: the prosthese are planned to completely erode in time .

The development of 3D printers has led to significant developments in many sectors, and no doubt, one of  the most important is the medical field. Patient-specific prostheses, 3D bioplotters, patient-specific medical modells, and even a potential for tissue or organ replacement, are signs that more and more 3D technology will take their place in our lives in the future.

Prof. Vasıf Hasırcı develops biodegradable materials containing bioactive agents and minerals to strengthen and introduce activity to materials to be printed as craniofacial implants. These  macroporous implants eventually degrades and replaced by the regenerating tissue. The prodcuts are prodcued in two ways: macroporous sponges produced by lyophilization rapid prototyped to have a well designed 3D architecture.

Recently a license agreement was signed between Prof Hasirci and  BTech Innovation which is one of the  leading companies of 3D printer technology and develops patient specific prostheses. Through this agreement, it is aimed to develop a prosthesis that will be able to substitute bone tissues lost due to trauma (traffic accidents, gunshot wounds) or diseases (tumors, osteoporosis). Thus, after a certain period of time, the prosthetic device will be completely transformed to the bone and risks such as infection, prosthesis rejection and the like that could originate from donated allogeneic or xenogeneic tissue will be prevented. This will also be an important solution to the problem of size changes as observed in growing children.

The invention which is supported by ODTÜ Teknoloji Transfer Office under the international patent registration laws is planned to be commercialized towards the end of 2019.

Prof. Vasıf Hasırcı commented: “3D printing technology has been developed for use in different industrial sectors and finally is being used in the field of health. Here, the fields of use especially are  hard tissue production (the tissues that have the capability of carrying load),  production of educational and training products and guidance elements for medical doctors for pre-surgery consultance. Although the developments in device production have reached a certain degree of saturation , there still  is a niche for the production of new biocompatible materials that can be used as implants, which is an important area of development. These are materials that do not have any negative effects on the body and can be transformed into natural tissues in time. I see this collaboration work as a very special relationship in terms of university – industry practice.”

Kuntay Aktaş, General Manager of BTech Innovation stated: “We are very pleased to make such an agreement in this field where significant developments in the world are almost inevitable. We think that the emergence of high-tech products in Turkey is very important, and we are very excited to have the opportunity to work with the most important scientists and teams. In the future we will work harder to transform this technology into a commercially viable products. ”

ODTÜ TTO Director, Assoc. Prof. Ahmet Yozgatlıgil commented: “As ODTÜ TTO, we are proud to have spent time and contributed to the process mentioned above. Our negotiations, which have been in progress since 2016, were finalized, providing maximum benefit for both parties. We believe that the transformation of our invention into a commercialized product in collaboration with Btech Innovation will create a real added value for the whole World.