Methacrylated Bovine Serum Albumin and Tannic Acid Composite Materials for Three-Dimensional Printing Tough and Mechanically Functional Parts

Patrick T. Smith, Gokce Altin, S. Cem Millik, Benjaporn Narupai, Cameron Sietz, James O. Park, Alshakim Nelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

Nature uses proteins as building blocks to create three-dimensional (3D) structural components (like spiderwebs and tissue) that are recycled within a closed loop. Furthermore, it is difficult to replicate the mechanical properties of these 3D architectures within synthetic systems. In the absence of biological machinery, protein-based materials can be difficult to process and can have a limited range of mechanical properties. Herein, we present an additive manufacturing workflow to fabricate tough, protein-based composite hydrogels and bioplastics with a range of mechanical properties. Briefly, methacrylated bovine-serum-albumin-based aqueous resins were 3D-printed using a commercial vat photopolymerization system. The printed structures were then treated with tannic acid to introduce additional non-covalent interactions and form tough hydrogels. The hydrogel material could be sutured and withstand mechanical load, even after immersion in water for 24 h. Additionally, a denaturing thermal cure could be used to virtually eliminate rehydration of the material and form a bioplastic. To highlight the functionality of this material, a bioplastic screw was 3D-printed and driven into wood without damage to the screw. Moreover, the 3D-printed constructs enzymatically degraded up to 85% after 30 days in pepsin solution. Thus, these protein-based 3D-printed constructs show great potential for biomedical devices that degrade in situ.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21418-21425
Number of pages8
JournalACS applied materials & interfaces
Volume14
Issue number18
DOIs
StatePublished - 11 May 2022
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • 3D printing
  • bioplastics
  • bovine serum albumin
  • protein-based materials
  • tannic acid
  • tough hydrogels

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