Document Type


Author ORCID Identifier

Venkatakrishnan Rengarajan

Yu Huang

Journal/Book Title

3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing

Publication Date



Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. Publishers


Additive manufacturing of polymers is gaining momentum in health care industries by providing rapid 3D printing of customizable designs. Yet, little is explored about the cytotoxicity of leachable toxins that the 3D printing process introduced into the final product. We studied three printable materials, which have various mechanical properties and are widely used in stereolithography 3D printing. We evaluated the cytotoxicity of these materials through exposing two fibroblast cell lines (human and mouse derived) to the 3D-printed parts, using overlay indirect contact assays. All the 3D-printed parts were measured toxic to the cells in a leachable manner, with flexible materials more toxic than rigid materials. Furthermore, we attempted to reduce the toxicity of the 3D-printed material by employing three treatment methods (further curing, passivation coating, and Soxhlet solvent extraction).

The Soxhlet solvent extraction method was the most effective in removing the leachable toxins, resulting in the eradication of the material's toxicity. Passivation coating and further curing showed moderate and little detoxification, respectively. Additionally, mechanical testing of the materials treated with extraction methods revealed no significant impacts on its mechanical performances. As leachable toxins are broadly present in 3D-printed polymers, our cytotoxicity evaluation and reduction methods could aid in extending the selections of biocompatible materials and pave the way for the translational use of 3D printing.

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Last Page



Final publication is available from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers



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