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5 March 2015 Applied 3D printing for microscopy in health science research
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The rapid prototyping capability offered by 3D printing is considered advantageous for commercial applications. However, the ability to quickly produce precision custom devices is highly beneficial in the research laboratory setting as well. Biological laboratories require the manipulation and analysis of delicate living samples, thus the ability to create custom holders, support equipment, and adapters allow the extension of existing laboratory machines. Applications include camera adapters and stage sample holders for microscopes, surgical guides for tissue preparation, and small precision tools customized to unique specifications. Where high precision is needed, especially the reproduction of fine features, a printer with a high resolution is needed. However, the introduction of cheaper, lower resolution commercial printers have been shown to be more than adequate for less demanding projects. For direct manipulation of delicate samples, biocompatible raw materials are often required, complicating the printing process. This paper will examine some examples of 3D-printed objects for laboratory use, and provide an overview of the requirements for 3D printing for this application. Materials, printing resolution, production, and ease of use will all be reviewed with an eye to producing better printers and techniques for laboratory applications. Specific case studies will highlight applications for 3D-printed devices in live animal imaging for both microscopy and Magnetic Resonance Imaging.
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Craig Brideau, Kourosh Zareinia, and Peter Stys "Applied 3D printing for microscopy in health science research", Proc. SPIE 9329, Multiphoton Microscopy in the Biomedical Sciences XV, 93292X (5 March 2015);


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