NIST has awarded a contract for the quality assurance of 3D printed medications.


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InfraTrac, a Maryland-based company specializing in quality assurance solutions for 3D printed products, has been granted a Phase II Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). The grant will support the development and commercialization of InfraTrac’s near-infrared (NIR) spectroscopy device.

InfraTrac recently completed Phase I of the contract, which demonstrated the device’s effectiveness in ensuring the accuracy of locally-produced 3D printed medication. The Phase II project aims to utilize NIR technology to detect incorrect drugs, improper dosage, faulty combinations, and failed prints. To verify the device’s efficacy, InfraTrac is collaborating with FabRx, a UK company that manufactures the M3DIMAKER 1 printer.

The M3DIMAKER 1 printer offers three different printheads, allowing InfraTrac to test the NIR spectroscopy device’s compatibility with various feedstocks and printing techniques. This versatility is crucial in developing a product that can be widely used in different pharmaceutical production environments.

In a press release, Sharon Flank, InfraTrac’s founder and CEO, expressed gratitude for NIST’s support and highlighted the company’s commitment to improving quality controls in 3D printed drug production. Flank also mentioned plans to expand collaboration with the University of Maryland’s School of Pharmacy.

This development signifies the commercialization of additive technologies in the pharmaceutical industry. The ability to produce drugs on-site has long been considered a potential advantage of additive manufacturing. However, currently, only ZipDose, a 3D printed drug with FDA approval, is available on the market, and on-site drug printing is limited to specific instances around the world.

The deployment of 3D printing technology on a larger scale raises questions about supply chains and the potential impact on traditional manufacturing processes. InfraTrac’s focus on quality assurance is crucial in ensuring the safe and widespread adoption of 3D printed drugs.

The company’s collaboration with NIST demonstrates the increasing technological maturity of the additive manufacturing sector. As the market continues to evolve, staying informed about the latest news and developments in the 3D printing industry is essential. By staying up-to-date, individuals and businesses can access valuable information and offers from third-party vendors.

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