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Novel antimicrobial materials designed for the 3D printing of medical devices used during the COVID-19 crisis

Samuel Furka (Department of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, Comenius University in Bratislava Faculty of Natural Sciences, Bratislava, Slovakia)
Daniel Furka (Department of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, Comenius University in Bratislava Faculty of Natural Sciences, Bratislava, Slovakia)
Nitin Chandra Teja Chandra Teja Dadi (Department of Microbiology and Virology, Comenius University in Bratislava Faculty of Natural Sciences, Bratislava, Slovakia)
Patrik Palacka (2nd Department of Oncology, Comenius University in Bratislava Faculty of Medicine, Bratislava, Slovakia)
Dominika Hromníková (Department of Molecular biology, Comenius University in Bratislava Faculty of Natural Sciences, Bratislava, Slovakia and Institute of Zoology Slovak Academy of Sciences, Bratislava, Slovakia)
Julio Ariel Dueñas Santana (Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Matanzas Camilo Cienfuegos, Matanzas, Cuba)
Javier Díaz Pineda (Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Matanzas Camilo Cienfuegos, Matanzas, Cuba)
Saul Dueñas Casas (Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Matanzas Camilo Cienfuegos, Matanzas, Cuba)
Juraj Bujdák (Department of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, Comenius University in Bratislava Faculty of Natural Sciences, Bratislava, Slovakia and Institute of Inorganic Chemistry SAS, Bratislava, Slovakia)

Rapid Prototyping Journal

ISSN: 1355-2546

Article publication date: 1 June 2021

Issue publication date: 14 July 2021

200

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to describe the preparation of antimicrobial material usable in 3D printing of medical devices. Despite the wealth of technological progress at the time of the crisis caused by SARS-CoV-2 virus: Virus that causes current Pandemic situation (COVID-19), the global population had long been exposed beforehand to an acute absence of essential medical devices. As a response, a new type of composite materials intended for rapid prototyping, based on layered silicate saponite (Sap), antimicrobial dye phloxine B (PhB) and thermoplastics, has been recently developed.

Design/methodology/approach

Sap was modified with a cationic surfactant and subsequently functionalized with PhB. The hybrid material in powder form was then grounded with polyethylene terephthalate-glycol (PETG) or polylactic acid (PLA) in a precisely defined weight ratio and extruded into printing filaments. The stability and level of cytotoxicity of these materials in various physiological environments simulating the human body have been studied. The applicability of these materials in bacteria and a yeast-infected environment was evaluated.

Findings

Ideal content of the hybrid material, with respect to thermoplastic, was 15 weight %. Optimal printing temperature and speed, with respect to maintaining antimicrobial activity of the prepared materials, were T = 215°C at 50 mm/s for PETG/SapPhB and T = 230°C at 40 mm/s for PLA/SapPhB. 3 D-printed air filters made of these materials could keep inner air flow at 63.5% and 76.8% of the original value for the PLA/SapPhB and PETG/SapPhB, respectively, whereas the same components made without PhB had a 100% reduction of airflow.

Practical implications

The designed materials can be used for rapid prototyping of medical devices.

Originality/value

The new materials have been immediately used in the construction of an emergency lung ventilator, Q-vent, which has been used in different countries during the COVID-19 crisis.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This work was supported by the Slovak Research and Development Agency under contract No. APVV-15–0347, APVV-18–0075 and Grants for Comenius University PhD students and young researchers (UK/163/2017 and UK/403/2018).

Conflict of interest: The authors declare no competing financial interest.

Citation

Furka, S., Furka, D., Dadi, N.C.T.C.T., Palacka, P., Hromníková, D., Dueñas Santana, J.A., Pineda, J.D., Casas, S.D. and Bujdák, J. (2021), "Novel antimicrobial materials designed for the 3D printing of medical devices used during the COVID-19 crisis", Rapid Prototyping Journal, Vol. 27 No. 5, pp. 890-904. https://doi.org/10.1108/RPJ-09-2020-0219

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited

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