Nydus One Syringe Extruder (NOSE): A Prusa i3 3D printer conversion for bioprinting applications utilizing the FRESH-method

Nils Bessler, Dennis Ogiermann, Maj Britt Buchholz, Alexander Santel, Jan Heidenreich, Rawas Ahmmed, Holm Zaehres, Beate Brand-Saberi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


Bioprinting, combined with other tissue engineering techniques, is a promising method to create engineered tissues or standardized 3D cell culturing models. It has potential applications in the development of animal free models for drug toxicity screenings or for personalized medicine approaches. Here we report the conversion of the worldwide used open source 3D printer (RepRap, Prusa i3) to a functional and affordable bioprinter by substituting the common plastic-extruder with the Nydus One Syringe Extruder (NOSE). The NOSE modification enables mechanical hydrogel extrusion as well as a tunable deposition precision and volume by featuring a modular syringe-holder concept. A cost effective and simple hardware design including a custom software (termed ‘composer’) was developed to prove that this technique can be made accessible for a broader public. Furthermore, the printing procedure was optimized for the peer-reviewed FRESH-method by Hinton et al. which allows to print geometrical complex cell-laden constructs. We provide a detailed protocol on the creation of the FRESH-gel to ensure the reproducibility of this state of the art method. As a proof of concept HEK293 cells as well as mouse embryonic stem cells (mESC) were utilized for cell-laden printing. Depending on the cellular source the survival rates range from 60% up to 95%. Automatized quantitative viability analysis was performed using the open source image analysis tool Icy, in particular the “spot detector” plugin. A detailed protocol allows the recreation of the assay. Further data utilizing a support bath printing technique reveal limitations regarding the printing and residential time of cell-laden constructs.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere00069
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Bioprinting Protocol
  • Bioprinting Software
  • Mechanical Syringe Extruder
  • Open Source Bioprinter
  • RepRap Modificiation


Dive into the research topics of 'Nydus One Syringe Extruder (NOSE): A Prusa i3 3D printer conversion for bioprinting applications utilizing the FRESH-method'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this