A unique combination of assets

The BDC has the capacity to fast track and validate a variety of biomaterials. It collaborates with a number of departments and clinics, including orthopaedics, ophthalmology, otorhinolaryngology, medical micro- biology, dentistry, maxillofacial surgery, orthodontics, surgery, internal medicine and cardiology.

The Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials is specialised in designing, building and connecting nano structured and (bio)functional materials to achieve unprecedented functionality. It is one of the leading institutes in the field of materials science and provides the building blocks for the BDC. Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials is specialised in engineered biomacromolecules or bioorganic hybrid structures for various medical applications.

Preclinical assessment within the biomaterial translational develop- ment process is an extensive and fundamental sector of the BDC, and is paramount for a solid validation of the materials before clinical trials. Biomaterial and biomaterial coating evaluation should always lead to a fast rejection within the in-vitro stage when necessary, and a comprehensive evaluation in in-vivo and ex-vivo models for potentially successful prototypes.

The department of Biomedical Engineering is a multi-disciplinary department (ranging from microbiologists, cell biologists, chemists and physicists), which is incredibly well equipped to evaluate biomaterials in a preclinical setting (Table 1). Outcomes and optimisation of the materials are discussed in tight collaborations with Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials and the clinic in order to get the most optimal surfaces into the clinic.

The BDC has a strong relationship with a number of Contract research organisations based in the region that are specialised in material sciences. If a method or technology is not internally available, our partners are happy to collaborate.

Available facilities within the BDC

The BDC enables fast and thorough evaluation of all types of infection-resistant biomaterials and biomaterial coatings, offering a unique combination of ex-vivo histology and in-vivo imaging tools to validate products in animal models while maintaining a close connection with the clinic. Material and coating development begins with the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials, optimized in the department of Biomedical Engineering, then refined in the clinic. However, what makes the BDC unique is that no individual group or department is solely involved at any one stage, and experts in all fields are active at all stages of development (Figure 1).