Dr. Lorenzo Moroni, Assistant Professor, Tissue Regeneration Department; University of Twente, The Netherlands. 

Prof. Dr. Dietmar Hutmacher, Professor, Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering, School of Engineering Systems; Queensland University of Technology, Australia. 

Prof. Dr. Scott Hollister, Professor, Departments of Biomedical and Mechanical Engineering, College of Engineering; Associate Professor, Surgery, Medical School; University of Michigan, U.S.A. 

Prof. Dr. Wei Sun, Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering and Mechanics; Drexel University, U.S.A. 

Prof. Dr. James Yoo, Professor, Institute for Regenerative Medicine; Wake Forest University, U.S.A. 

Dr. Giovanni Vozzi, Interdepartmental Research Center "E. Piaggio", Faculty of Engineering; University of Pisa, Italy. 

Dr. Fabien Guillemot, INSERM, Biomaterials and Tissue Repair (U577); University of Bordeaux, France. 

Dr. Jan Czernuszka, Department of Materials, University of Oxford; United Kingdom. 

Dr. Tim Woodfield, Department of Orthopedic Surgery & Musculoskeletal Medicine, University of Otago, Christchurch, New Zealand. 

Dr. Ali Khademhosseini, Associate Professor, Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology, Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, Cambridge, MA 02139, US.

Prof. Dr. Feng Lin, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Tsinghua University, China. 

Prof. Dr. Dong-Woo Cho, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Center for Rapid Prototyping based 3D tissue/organ Printing, San 31 Hyoja-dong, Mag-gu, Pohang, Kyungbuk 790-751, Korea.

Chair: Prof. Dr. Wei Sun

Vice Chair: Dr. Lorenzo Moroni

Secretary: Dr. Tim Woodfield

Chair, Vice Chair, and Secretary will be elected every 3 years in concomitance with world TERMIS. 

Endorsed By:

  1. Dr. Aleksandr Ovsianikov from Technical University of Wien.
  2. Prof. Wojcech Swieszkowski from Technical University of Warsaw.
  3. Group of Rui Reis, University of Minho, Portugal. 

Rationale at the basis of Biofabrication as a thematic group in TERMIS

Biofabrication has grown tremendously in the last decades and become an important and established platform of different technologies with great promises for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine applications among others. Biofabrication does not comprise only different rapid prototyping techniques able to create complex three-dimensional scaffolds, but has also evolved to enable processing of bioactive matrices and cell-material constructs. Biofabrication uses cells, biomaterials and macromolecules to create basic building blocks of tissues and organs. This is allowing researchers to study and better understand the relationship between controlled material and cell placement and the formation of tissues in three-dimensions (3D).

At the same time, biofabrication is explored as a technology platform with the potential to be translated into the surgical theatre. Where current tissue engineering strategies can repair patches or parts of single tissues, biofabrication holds the potential to form complex engineered tissues, formed of different and multiple tissues, and organs. These replacement parts of our body, when proved functional, will allow the improvement of a number of critically sized tissue and organ degenerations.

Collaborative Melting Pot

The recent formation of the "international society of biofabrication" (ISBF) is a final expression of the efforts and hopes around biofabrication platforms. The "biofabrication" thematic group within TERMIS aims at fostering discussions, interactions, and collaborations between researchers and clinicians working with different biofabrication approaches. It can be a unique opportunity for ISBF and TERMIS members to exchange ideas, thoughts, and give origin to collaborative efforts to bring 3D cell culture systems into routine lab practice and translate the fabricated tissues and organs into the clinics.

Aim of the Biofabrication thematic group

The aim of the biofabrication thematic group is to stimulate discussion and collaborations around fundamental and applied research activities focused on 3D cell culture and functional tissue regeneration. The proposed thematic group will focus on the development of using novel physical, chemical, biological, and/or engineering process for: 1) 3D tissue scaffolds and tissue constructs; 2) computer-aided biofabrication and tissue engineering; 3) cell/tissue printing, patterning and organ printing; 4) construction of cell assemblies as tissues for regenerative medicine, disease models and drug models; 5) integrated bio-nano fabrication and bio-micro fabrication; 6) cell-integrated biological systems, microfluidic devices, biosensors, and biochips; and 7) protein/biomolecule printing and patterning. The following topics are initially proposed as central to the thematic group:

  1. Test Scaffold Design Hypotheses:
    controlled fabrication of biomaterials and importance to test design hypotheses for biomaterial scaffolds.
  2. Integration of Computational Design and Material/Matrix Fabrication:
    ability to couple hierarchical computational design with controlled matrix fabrication.
  3. Enhance/Enable Clinical Translation:
    Controlled Fabrication of Biomaterials and Cell-Biomaterials Hybrid Constructs - Importance for translation of biomaterial scaffolds (i.e. creating scaffolds that can meet functional demands of real clinical defects, ability to scale manufacturing of scaffolds, perform quality control, etc.)
  4. Cell Biology:
    cell printing and its use to gain new insights into developmental cell biology and tissue engineering through controlled 3D location of cells, matrices and growth factors.
  5. In Vitro Tissue Models:
    Assessment of in vitro tissue models to study new treatments for diseases and their potential use as an alternative to animal models for clinical translation.
  6. 3D Cell Culture platforms:
    Shift from 2D to 3D cell culture systems and evaluation of cellular activity in comparison to in vivo models.



The members of the biofabrication thematic group will actively organize or promote the organization of:

1) symposia and workshops around the theme at TERMIS and other conferences in the interdisciplinary field of regenerative medicine; 

organization will take place at each TERMIS chapter from correspondent members of the thematic group in a rotational manner. At the world TERMIS, we will elect two organizers for a global symposium on biofabrication. For each of these symposia, a special issue will be arranged and published in the journal “Biofabrication”. The participants will be invited to submit a paper, describing the work presented at these particular symposia, to the special issues of “Biofabrication”. 


2) Foster networking and integration with industry; 

Networking and integration with industry will be sought by looking at the following aspects: (1) public-private funding; (2) integration of technologies; (3) intellectual properties. 

Key questions that will need to be addressed are: what does industry want/need from biofabrication (i.e. faster, cheaper, application specific devices or flexible systems, etc) and how can we as researchers come up with technologies to achieve this in partnership with industry? 

Intellectual properties(IP) will be potential issues when new technology is developed in a public-private partnership. So new model for IP protection will be sought.

3) Providing an expert platform to facilitate clinical translation; 

Clinical translation will be promoted by: (1) organizing show-cast into clinics; (2) forming discussion panels with clinicians to understand their needs in terms of biofabrication. 

Similar to what anticipated for industrial networking, key questions to be addressed are: what do surgeons want/need/see from biofabrication (i.e. faster, cheaper, application specific devices or flexible systems, minimally invasive, etc) and how can we as researchers come up with technologies to achieve this in partnership with surgeons?”

4) Exchange of Ph.D. students or post-doctoral fellows; 

6-9 months exchange where common scientific questions and complementary expertise are available. This will be organized by the participating academic, clinical, and industrial members independently. The thematic group will offer advice where personnel exchange is sought, but connections are not in place 

In the future, the thematic group could look into sponsoring or funding options in agreement with ISBF. For example, travel awards linked to attendance at a TERMIS meeting or PhD scholarships could be sought.

5) Internal committees to seek for continental and intercontinental opportunities for common research funding; 

Customized committees formed in each TERMIS chapter within the thematic group to seek opportunities for common funding. The thematic group will try to arise, in this manner, attention on biofabrication so that specific calls may be available in future granting schemes.

Endorsed by:

Prof. Dr. Davide Donati, 2nd Division Orthopedic and Traumatology Clinic, Orthopedic Pathology and Bone Tissue Engineering Laboratory, Orthopedic Institute Rizzoli, Italy. 

Prof. Dr. Daniel Saris, Department of Orthopaedics, Utrecht Medical Center, The Netherlands. 

Dr. Norman A. Marcus, Virginia Cartilage Institute, 8346 Traford Lane, Springfield, VA 22152, U.S.A. 

Dr. Gary Hooper, associate professor and head of Orthopaedic Surgery Department, University of Otago, Christchurch, New Zealand. 

Prof. Dr. Anthony J. Atala, Director Institute for Regenerative Medicine, Wake Forest University, U.S.A. 

Dr. Jens Riesle, Chief Scientific Officer, CellCoTec B.V., The Netherlands. 

Dr. Matthias Lutolf, Laboratory of Stem Cell Bionegineering, Ecole Polytechnique de Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland. 

Prof. GeunHyung Kim, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Chosun University, Gwangju City, Republic of Korea. 

Dr. Utkan Demirci, Bio-Acoustic MEMS in Medicine Laboratories, Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA . 

Dr. Maria Letizia Focarete, "Giacomo Ciamician" Chemical Department, University of Bologna, Italy. 

Prof. Nicola Tirelli, School of Biomedicine, The University of Manchester, United Kingdom. 

Dr. Jan-Thorsten Schantz, Department of Plastic and Hand Surgery, Technical University of Munich, Germany. 

Dr. Thiam Chye Lim, Department of Surgery, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, Singapore.