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Dernière mise à jour : Mai 2018

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Zein: a model material for 3D-printing biopolymer melts

Extrusion of a plasticized zein filament
Our research has shown that zein, the seed storage protein found in maize, is suitable for 3D printing by deposition in the molten state.

3D printing is an additive manufacturing technique that builds 3-dimensional objects based on a computer-file template. One of the most mainstream 3D printing processes is fused deposition modelling (FDM), which works by depositing a thermoplastic polymer filament layer-by-layer. To extend the range of FDM-process applications out to biomedical and pharmaceutical manufacturing, new thermoplastic materials need to be purpose-developed. All-natural biodegradable biopolymers, some biocompatible and potentially even edible, could make good candidate materials, but only with a purpose-tailored formulation. Our research has shown that zein, the seed storage protein found in maize, is suitable for 3D printing by deposition in the molten state.

CNRS (GEPEA UMRCNRS-6144) (E. Leroy), dans le cadre de la Fédération IBSM (Ingénierie des Biopolymères pour la Structuration des Matrices et des Matériaux; SFR-4202)


Chaunier, L., Della Valle, G., Dalgalarrondo, M., Marion, D., Lourdin, D. and Leroy, E. 2017. Rheology and structural changes of plasticized zeins in the molten state. Rheologica Acta, 56:941-953.

Chaunier, L., Leroy, E., Della Valle, G. and Lourdin, D. (2016). Plasticized Protein for 3D Printing by Fused Deposition Modeling. Annual Conference of the European Scientific Association for Material Forming. AIP Conference Proceedings, 1769(1), Id. 190001.