The world of 3D printing shows no signs of stopping. From 3D printed guns and medical implants to food and shoes, it seems that just about anything can be 3D printed.
An Israeli company, Syqe Medical, thinks it has a way to make medical marijuana more accepted with the help of 3D printing. The company has printed a pocket-sized metered dose cannabis inhaler they hope will help move the bar forward in medical inhalers and help physicians overcome the unpredictability of prescribing cannabis.
The inhaler is the first drug delivery platform of its kind. Not only is it 3D printed, but it’s Wifi enabled and can be connected to a smart phone or tablet.
The connected device aspect of the inhaler adds another layer to the challenge of monitoring dosages of medical marijuana giving both patients and doctors the ability in real time to monitor and administer the correct dosage. Researchers will also be able to see the data to determine best dosages for different conditions.
Plastics Today reported that 75% of the parts of the medical inhaler were printed on a Stratasys 3D printers which sped up the manufacturing process and got them to clinical trials faster than if they had used traditional manufacturing methods.
According to Perry Davidson, CEO, Syqe Medical, different materials were selected for the four main components of the device—the shell, chassis, airway and thermal housing which allowed them to have rigidity, clarity, biocompatibility and heat resistance for the inhaler.
“Since metered dose inhalation of raw botanicals is a highly unconventional undertaking, we had to develop the tooling and machines for many of our processes,” explains Davidson. “More than half of our production equipment, jigs and analytical tools were printed in house.”
The Syqe Inhaler for home use will be available in 2015.