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Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology

Where Science Meets Society

3D-printed Splint Saves Infant’s Life

Half a millennium after Johannes Gutenberg printed the bible, researchers printed a 3D splint that saved the life of an infant born with severe tracheobronchomalacia, a birth defect that causes the airway to collapse.

While similar surgeries have been preformed using tissue donations and windpipes created from stem cells, this is the first time 3D printing has been used to treat tracheobronchomalacia—at least in a human.

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