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RESEARCH THEMES

Our lab is Applying Nano & Microfabrication Techniques in the Manufacturing of Drug Delivery Systems, Medical Devices and Implants.

Our Lab is emerging new materials and manufacturing techniques, in order to address the challenges associated with the manufacture of pharmaceutical systems that will teach new tricks to old drugs and on the development of new personalised medical devices and implants.

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ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING

Our AM research is focusing on the development of AM equipment & processes, in materials for drug delivery applications & implants, in Bioprinting, and in printing for medications.

  1. Manufacturing of novel drug delivery systems & medical devices (e.g., catheters, drug eluting vascular grafts, implants for long-acting drug delivery, surgical meshes, microneedles, oral dosage forms) using innovative 3D printing technologies. 

  2. 3D Bioprinting applications in pharmaceutics and tissue engineering (e.g., arterial regeneration, bioresorbable vascular scaffolds, cardiac patches, wound healing).

  3. 4D printing systems for the manufacturing of scaffolds, implants, and targeted drug delivery systems.

  4. Bioinks & Filaments: In-house prepared Bio-inks using natural or synthetic polymers, and preparation of drug-loaded or empty filaments by hot-melt extrusion (HME).


The implantable medical devices that manufactured / designed in our lab, can be used for the delivery of a variety of molecules for the treatment of diversity of diseases, such Cardiovascular, Cancer (e.g., Breast, Prostate), Diabetes, Gynaecological, HIV, Ocular, and Parkinson’s, among many others.

Recognised as world leaders in 3D Printing. PubMed-based algorithms (Aug 2023) placed us in the top 0.11% of scholars in the world writing about 3D Printing over the past 10 years.

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ELECTROHYDRODYNAMIC PROCESSES 

  1. Manufacturing of medical nanofibers by electrospinning (melt or solution) for a variety of drug delivery and tissue engineering applications (e.g., cardiac patches, long-acting implantable devices, oral films, solid dispersions, surgical mesh implants, wound healing).

  2. Electrospray: coating of implants (e.g., stents) or preparation of microparticles. 

PubMed-based algorithms (Aug 2023) placed us in the top 0.64% of scholars in the world writing about nanofibers.

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MICROFLUIDICS & LAB-ON-A-CHIP

  1. Manufacturing of polymer-based (e.g., PLGA), lipid-based (e.g., liposomes, Solid lipid nanoparticles, niosomes, exosomes), hydrid, supramolecular assembly, metal-based (e.g., Au), and Nanocrystalline Nanomedicines using microfluidics and comparison with traditional formulation methods (e.g., extrusion, high-pressure homogenization, thin-film hydration) for imaging or treatment or targeting using new or currently available drugs & biologics; including surface modification for cancer treatment/targeting.

  2. In-house fabrication of microfluidic chips (including Lab-on-a-chip | Organ-on-a-chip) for Pharmaceutical Applications (e.g., Drug Delivery, Drug Screening) by 3D printing or moulding.

Recognised as world leaders in Microfluidics. PubMed-based algorithms (Aug 2023) placed us in the top 0.074% of scholars in the world writing about Microfluidics over the past 10 years.

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POC & BIOSENSORS

Use of Microelectromechanical Systems (MEMS) & BioMEMS as point-of-care (PoC) diagnostic devices, biosensors, and drug delivery devices, in combination with 3D Printed (e.g., Microneedles) or Microfluidic systems.

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SUSTAINABILITY & SUPPLY-CHAIN

The lab is a Sustainable Lab and has received the Sustainable Lab Awards Silver S-Lab & is engaged in the pilot lab sustainability program LEAF. 

3D printing & Microfluidics are game changers in pharmaceutical industry and completely reconfigure business ecosystems. Therefore, is very important to understand the environmental, social, economic and legal concerns on the use of these Emerging Technologies, and their capabilities in Pharmaceutical Manufacturing.

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OUR STUDIES INCLUDE 

  1. From conceptualization, to formulation to in vivo analysis: Conceptualization, Formulation / Manufacturing, Physicochemical Characterization using state-of-the-art techniques, Computational Modelling (e.g., Finite Element Analysis (FEA), Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD)), and in vitro, ex vivoin vivo evaluation.

  2. Implementation of concepts such as Scaling-out, Scaling-up, Continuous Manufacturing, Quality by Design (QbD) & Process Analytical Technology (PAT; e.g., NIR, MiR, Raman, and UV probes).

  3. Machine Learning /  Artificial Intelligence: variety of methods in Additive Manufacturing and Microfluidics. 

  4. Advanced Characterisation: Use of state-of-the-art Nanocharacterisation techniques (e.g., AFM, μCT, ToF-SIMS, XPS).

If you want to learn more about our research, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

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