3D Printed Platelet-Rich Plasma to Help Speed up Wound Healing

According to a new study from RCSI University of Medicine and Health Sciences, successful wound healing can be assisted by recreating a critical component of human blood.

The study, published in Advanced Functional Materials, was spearheaded by experts from RCSI’s Department of Anatomy and Regenerative Medicine’s Tissue Engineering Research Group (TERG) and SFI AMBER Centre.

Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is a naturally present healing substance found in human blood. This research looks into ways to improve wound healing by collecting platelet-rich plasma (PRP) from a patient’s blood and altering it using 3D printing to produce an implant for tissue repair that may be used to treat tricky skin wounds in a single surgical operation.

The results revealed that using the 3D-printed PRP implant aided wound healing by allowing for efficient vascularization (the formation of new blood vessels) and suppressing fibrosis (tissue scarring/thickening), both of which are necessary for optimal wound healing.

Professor Fergal O’Brien, Prof of Bioengineering and Regenerative Medicine at RCSI, remarked of the unique features of this discovery, “Existing research reveals that although the PRP already existing in our blood helps to repair wounds, scarring can still develop. We can boost the creation of blood vessels while reducing the creation of scars using 3D-printing PRP into a biomaterial scaffold, resulting in more effective wound healing”.

“In addition to encouraging findings for skin wound healing, this technique has the ability to regenerate other tissues, hence having a significant impact on the 3D printing, regenerative medicine, and personalized medicine sectors.”