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Fall 2017

Inquiry Magazine Archive

  • Winter 2016

    Winter 2016: Energy Evolution

    From carbon dioxide conversion to landfill mining, researchers at UTA are seeking viable alternative energy options.

  • Spring 2016

    Spring 2016: Premium Blend

    Found in everything from space shuttles to dental fillings, composite materials have thoroughly infiltrated modern society. But their potential is still greatly untapped, offering researchers ample opportunity for discovery.

  • Fall 2015

    Fall 2015: Collision Course

    Within the particle showers created at the Large Hadron Collider, answers to some of the universe’s mysteries are waiting.

  • Spring 2015

    Spring 2015: Almost Human

    Model systems like pigeons can help illuminate our own evolutionary and genomic history.

  • Fall 2014

    Fall 2014: Small Wonder

    UT Arlington's tiny windmills are bringing renewable energy to a whole new scale.

  • Winter 2014

    Winter 2014: Overdue for an Overhaul

    The stability of our highways, pipelines, and even manholes is reaching a breaking point.

  • 2012

    2012: Mystery solved?

    Scientists believe they have discovered a subatomic particle that is crucial to understanding the universe.

  • 2011

    2011: Boosting brain power

    UT Arlington researchers unlock clues to the human body’s most mysterious and complex organ.

  • 2010

    2010: Powered by genetics

    UT Arlington researchers probe the hidden world of microbes in search of renewable energy sources.

  • 2009

    2009: Winning the battle against pain

    Wounded soldiers are benefiting from Robert Gatchel’s program that combines physical rehabilitation with treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder.

  • 2009

    2007: Sensing a solution

    Tiny sensors implanted in the body show promise in combating acid reflux disease, pain and other health problems.

  • 2006

    2006:Semiconductors: The next generation

    Nanotechnology researchers pursue hybrid silicon chips with life-saving potential.

  • 2005

    2005: Imaging is everything

    Biomedical engineers combat diseases with procedures that are painless to patients.


Incredible Ink

Professor developing bioink that could be used to print body parts  

Incredible Ink

Human tissue and organs from a 3-D printer? It could be possible, if Kyungsuk Yum and his research team are successful. The materials science and engineering assistant professor is developing bioinks, the first step in what could lead to 3-D printing of human body parts.

The process for bioprinting requires inks that are both 3-D-printable and biocompatible. Current bioinks are mostly made from a polymer solution that encapsulates cells. But since they are in a liquid state, the bioinks spread, making them difficult to use in printing 3-D tissue structures that are self-supporting and high-resolution.

“Ideally, bioinks should be liquid-like during the printing process, but solid-like after,” explains Dr. Yum.

His team is developing a nanocomposite ink that incorporates carbon nanotubes. The result, Yum hopes, will be that the ink will change its mechanical properties, working as liquid during printing and reverting to solid after.

“If we’re successful, we’ll be able to print more complex, 3-D tissue structures with higher resolution that are more similar to those within our body,” he says. “From there, we can work to develop a new technology that will eventually lead to printing physiologically relevant 3-D tissues and, ultimately, working organs.”

Yum has earned a $100,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to fund his development of the bioinks.

“The broad application of his research can impact the future of the field and it could change lives,” says Stathis Meletis, chair of the Materials Science and Engineering Department. “UTA’s emphasis on innovation is already paying dividends.”


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