Ever wondered what an enzyme looks like up close and personal?
Well now you can see it with your very own eyes!
The magic of 3D printing means we can have a detailed look at something which is otherwise so small that it can only be seen using x-ray techniques. When a PhD student at St Andrews University recently approached 3dprintworks, asking us to print the Fluorinase Momomerscale, we were more than happy to oblige.
The edge of the Fluorinase Momomerscale was defined by encasing it inside a crystal matrix and this enabled a 3D image to be created using advanced x-ray techniques. We printed the enzyme using ABS Midnight Blue filament and it took us a total of 2 ½ hours to print.
Fluorinated natural products are very rare and the element fluorine is popularly used within medicine as it alters the properties of a molecule without changing the shape or adding much weight. As fluorinaise is used within medicinal drugs such as anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, antibiotics and more, this development of being able to 3D print the enzyme could hold the key to exploring further medical advancements in more detail.
3D printing has already been transforming the medicinal industry in extraordinary ways. It is thought that the ability to print the human anatomy in 3D will be an invaluable source of learning for future students, while a 3D substitute recently replaced 75% of a man’s skull.
One thing we’re sure of is that right now we’re probably only scratching the surface of the medical feats we will reach with the technology of 3D printing.
Are you a medical student or professional? What do you think will be most beneficial about3D printing within the industry?
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