Active Materials for 3D Printing in Small Animals: Current Modalities and Future Directions for Orthopedic Applications

Parastoo Memarian, Elham Pishavar, Federica Zanotti, Martina Trentini, Francesca Camponogara, Elisa Soliani, Paolo Gargiulo, Maurizio Isola, Barbara Zavan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

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The successful clinical application of bone tissue engineering requires customized implants based on the receiver’s bone anatomy and defect characteristics. Three-dimensional (3D) printing in small animal orthopedics has recently emerged as a valuable approach in fabricating individualized implants for receiver-specific needs. In veterinary medicine, because of the wide range of dimensions and anatomical variances, receiver-specific diagnosis and therapy are even more critical. The ability to generate 3D anatomical models and customize orthopedic instruments, implants, and scaffolds are advantages of 3D printing in small animal orthopedics. Furthermore, this technology provides veterinary medicine with a powerful tool that improves performance, precision, and cost-effectiveness. Nonetheless, the individualized 3D-printed implants have benefited several complex orthopedic procedures in small animals, including joint replacement surgeries, critical size bone defects, tibial tuberosity advancement, patellar groove replacement, limb-sparing surgeries, and other complex orthopedic procedures. The main purpose of this review is to discuss the application of 3D printing in small animal orthopedics based on already published papers as well as the techniques and materials used to fabricate 3D-printed objects. Finally, the advantages, current limitations, and future directions of 3D printing in small animal orthopedics have been addressed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1045
Number of pages25
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 18 Jan 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

Other keywords

  • 3D printing
  • Materials
  • Orthopedics
  • Receiver-specific
  • Veterinary
  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Prostheses and Implants
  • Models, Animal
  • Orthopedic Procedures/instrumentation
  • Printing, Three-Dimensional/instrumentation
  • Models, Anatomic


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