Novel and Affordable 3D Printed Transcranial Focused Ultrasound Device Developed

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Key Points

  • Hong Chen, PhD, and her team have designed and tested a low-cost 3D-printed transcranial focused ultrasound transducer for preclinical research.
  • The transducer can be connected to a stereotactic head frame and used at three frequencies.
  • Laboratories can print their own device for approximately $80 in materials.

Hong ChenHong Chen PhD, and her research team at Washington University in St. Louis have designed and tested a new 3D-printed transcranial focused ultrasound transducer for preclinical research. Their “Do It Yourself” instructions have been published in the journal IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering. With 3D printing becoming more widely available, the miniature system promises to provide worldwide access to the technology for about $80 in materials.

“Researchers and clinicians use focused ultrasound and microbubbles to open the blood-brain barrier (BBB) for many uses,” said Dr. Chen. “But in preclinical research, the existing focused ultrasound devices are costly. Our idea is to provide researchers around the world access to the technology so that more work can be done to determine the most effective methods of using focused ultrasound to deliver drugs, disrupt the BBB, enhance immunotherapy, and more.”

After it is 3D printed, the focused ultrasound transducer can be connected to a commercially available stereotactic head frame for preclinical studies and used at three different frequencies (1.5, 3.0, and 6.0 MHz).

See the Washington University in St. Louis Announcement >

See the Article in IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering >