Thank you, Ann for this article. As an animal rights advocate I appreciate the possibilities this offers for teaching aids. Medical schools are migrating from animal models to virtual or simulated models as teaching/learning media. Before someone interrupts and says, "but you need the real thing to ..." let me just say that if it is possible to reduce violence and suffering of animals, isn't it morally incumbent to do so whenever possible? This technology can help make the world a less cruel place.
Interesting question. We've been writing about 3D printing for surgical guides, implants and medical/dental models for a couple of years now, but I've never heard of any related regulations. The only medical-related regs I've seen are for materials, in this case plastics, 3D printed or not. There are several different classes of regs, depending on whether they touch the skin, mucous membranes, are implanted, etc.
Combining 3D printing with cloud-based services is one of the latest trends in this area, part of what's being called distributed and/or remote manufacturing. The cloud could technically include faxing, as in the Zeus 3D printer/faxer/scanner/copier we wrote about last week http://www.designnews.com/author.asp?section_id=1392&doc_id=267490
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