Additive manufacturing of pharmaceuticals for precision medicine applications: A review of the promises and perils in implementation

Megha Trivedi, Joann Jee, Suzanila Silva, Carmel Blomgren, Vasco M. Pontinha, Dave L. Dixon, Benjamin Van Tassel, Michael J. Bortner, Christopher Williams, Eric Gilmer, Alexander P. Haring, Justin Halper, Blake N. Johnson, Zhenyu Kong, Matthew S. Halquist, Paul F. Rocheleau, Timothy E. Long, Thomas Roper, Dayanjan S. Wijesinghe

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Precision medicine is an emerging field in healthcare that seeks to tailor preventive and therapeutic strategies to the unique physiology, biochemistry, lifestyles, and genetics of individual patients. There are several technologies that are key to the successful delivery of precision medicine including pharmacogenomics, pharmacometabolomics, improved point-of-care testing, and therapeutically-tailored medications. The inclusion of additive manufacturing (AM) technology, more commonly known as 3D printing, in the manufacture of oral dosage forms such as tablets, provides an avenue for the implementation of precision medicine in current healthcare practice via the prescription of specific dosage forms and drug combinations tailored to individual needs. Widespread commercialization of AM of pharmaceuticals has the potential to disrupt the supply chain used by the healthcare industry worldwide with the cost-saving potential of minimizing waste related to unused, expired medications. Despite the potential of this technology, many clinical and regulatory challenges will need to be addressed prior to large-scale implementation of AM fabricated therapeutics for precision medicine applications. This review investigates both the potential and the challenges of delivering AM fabricated medications for therapeutic use in precision medicine applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)319-328
Number of pages10
JournalAdditive Manufacturing
StatePublished - Oct 2018
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • General Materials Science
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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