Degree Name

Master of Philosophy


Australian Institute for Innovative Materials


The objective of the project is to develop a 3D printed scaffold capable of permitting quick release of the anti-inflammatory Dexamethasone, while simultaneously maintaining slow release of the anti-epileptic drug Phenytoin. It is anticipated that the scaffold will be suitable or intracerebral implantation for the prophylactic treatment of seizures: the slow release anti-epileptic intended as a replacement for daily self-medication, and the simultaneous short-term release of the anti-inflammatory in order to minimise any inflammation caused during implantation. The implant serves not only for the prophylactic treatment of epilepsy patients, but also presents a use in the prophylactic treatment of seizures in patients who are at high risk of postoperative seizures when implanted following a neurosurgical procedure.

Unlike traditional drug release models, which generally are restricted to a single drug, this research involves multi-drug release; utilizing advances in the field of 3D Bioprinting. New breakthroughs in 3D bioprinting allow fabrication of composite multi-polymer structures that permit the complex release profiles required for multi-drug delivery systems.

The project explores the extrusion printing of drug-loaded scaffolds with analysis into the effect of polymer type, synthesis and variation in 3D structures on the drug-release profile. It then focuses on the fabrication of a 3D structured polymer composite, enabling the concurrent dual release of the quick-release Dexamethasone and the slow release Phenytoin; altering release rates initially via the simple variation of scaffold morphology such as layer number, and then moving onto more complex variations such as shell shape and thickness.



Unless otherwise indicated, the views expressed in this thesis are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the University of Wollongong.