I-Form and PBC BioMed sign breakthrough deal to develop medical implants

Prof Nicholas Dunne, I-Form
Prof Nicholas Dunne, I-Form

Project will investigate the manufacturing magnesium-based medical implants using state-of-the art metal 3D printing and coating processes



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29 October 2020 | 0

I-Form and PBC BioMed have signed a €312,000 four-year deal to develop new medical implants.

The project will investigate the feasibility of manufacturing magnesium-based medical implants using state-of-the art metal 3D printing and coating processes. Ultimately, the aim is to demonstrate improved implant performance while developing a novel, cost- effective, advanced manufacturing process. 

The SFI Research Centre for Advanced Manufacturing, I-Form, is a leader in 3D metal printing. Shannon-based PBC BioMed designs, develops and manufactures medical devices and has a track record of science-based innovation in partnership with small, medium and global medical companies.




The I-Form research team will be led by Prof Nicholas Dunne and Dr Tanya Levingstone at DCU.

“This four-year research programme is an exciting continuation of a long-term, fruitful research partnership between DCU and PBC BioMed,” said Prof Dunne. “The advanced manufacturing expertise across the I-Form Centre will bring significant additional value to the programme. In particular, the access to expertise and cutting-edge equipment for metal 3D printing is essential to develop the next generation of these medical devices.”

Dr Levingstone added: “Metal 3D printing is a digital-first advanced manufacturing process that facilitates rapid product development and unique designs that are not possible using traditional techniques. The 3D printing of magnesium alloys is a relatively new area, but the excellent mechanical properties and biodegradability make these materials exciting candidates for improved device performance in orthopaedic applications.”

“This long-term engagement with I-Form forms a critical part of our R&D product and technology roadmap process,” said Paul Burke, managing partner for PBC BioMed. “The SFI Centre – industry engagement model allows us to access the best expertise and equipment in academic institutions. Development of our R&D platform will help drive innovation and sustainability.”

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