BioprintingExecutive InterviewsRobotics

One to One with Michael Golway, inventor of the BioAssemblyBot 6-Axis 3D Bioprinter

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American entrepreneur, engineer and inventor. In November 2000, at the age of 31, Michael Golway acquired his first technology company, IDS Engineering. The company had 2 employees with a focused business model of workflow consulting services. Today he is President & CEO of Advanced Solutions, Inc., which is a privately held company he acquired in November 2004, and parent company to an aggregate of technology businesses, including IDS Engineering. Michael’s passion is building and acquiring great technology companies while growing market share through value innovation. He is the lead inventor for the integrated solution of BioAssemblyBot and TSIM, a 6‐Axis Robotic 3D Printing System for Human Tissue Structures. Michael has over two decades of experience leading multi-disciplined engineering, consulting and technology firms. We were able to catch up with him for an exclusive look at a bioprinting technology that is changing medical research.

What are some examples of bioprints that can be done with the BAB that could not be down with a standard 3 axis bioprinter?

“There a three key advantages of the BioAssemblyBot 6-axis robotic print arm to facilitate an all-in-one automated workflow for 3D tissue printing: The BioAssemblyBot 6-axis robotic arm enables users to utilize 3D print strategies for both additive (traditional) and contour printing.  Contour printing provides the added flexibility to print on existing structures with irregular geometric shapes (e.g. the surface of a heart).  Users gain the benefit of being able to print sub-structures, allow the biology to develop, and then print added levels of complexity to the structure. The BioAssemblyBot 6-axis robot provides for an efficient and flexible tool change capability.  In the current model, users can utilize up to 8 different tools in a single print run.  Advanced Solutions has an expanding tool library, which includes the capability to pick up and move well plates, petri dishes, microscope slides, etc. in and out of the print area. Furthermore, the BioAssemblyBot 6-axis robot brings forward over 60 years of industrial robotic agile manufacturing capability into the biology lab.  We are currently designing tools that will allow users to 3D  print sub-assembly tissue structures and then assembly the sub-assemblies into a final assembly”. 

Which materials can be used with the BAB and which have been used and documented?

Any flowable material that can be dispensed from a syringe in the temperature range of 4C to 120C.  We have maintained temperature control in the syringe (both in a queue and during printing) and on the print stage.”

How large is Advanced Solutions?

“Advanced Solutions is currently 130 employees and we are growing the employee count at approximately 27% per year.”

What is the Life Science Company/Division Business model?

“The Advanced Solutions Life Sciences business model is to provide an integrated solution. Hardware includes varying 3D tissue printing hardware platforms (BioAssemblyBot, BioBot, BioStorageBot). BioAssemblyBot is patent-pending and the world’s first commercial 6-axis robotic 3D tissue printer. BioBot is patent-pending and the world’s first desktop 3D tissue printing polar printer. BioStorageBot is a future innovation that we will be introducing. The Software and Controls business includes TSIM, our software platform that enables users to create digital prototypes of their 3D tissue models and provides seamless integration into our Hardware platforms. Another product, VIPM is Vascularized In vitro Perfusion Model and it is an innovation developed by Advanced Solutions that offers the world’s first 3D printed adaptable human microvasculature.  VIPM operates in a closed-loop microfluidics platform. The product was developed in our Life Sciences lab with our BioAssemblyBot technology platform and is being sold in 12-well plates. For our Lab Services business, we have a team of biologists, scientists and engineers that are available for our customers to explore the possibilities with 3D printed tissue structures custom to their business or research requirements. We also offer an expanding library of bioinks that can be used with the Hardware and Software platform. Finally, we offer a full line of supplies for the Hardware platform including syringes, print needles, etc.”    

 When was the Life Science Company/Division established and when was the BAB launched?

The original idea for the company was developed in October 2010.  The company was officially launched in March 2013.”

How much is the system?

“We offer hardware and software solutions that range from $5,000 (USD) to $250,000 (USD).  We also offer a no risk flexible upgrade path.  If a customer purchases our basic platform, they have the option to upgrade to our advanced platform, in the future, and apply the original investment to the new purchase.”

What does the TSIM software do that other cad software can’t, and how does it interface with BAB the machine?

“TSIM provides a niche 3D design tool for modeling tissue structures.  At only $99 per year, the software offers one of the easiest conversion processes from common medical images to 3D models in the marketplace.  The platform was design in conjunction with biologists and researchers so the interface is easy to use and allows the creation of models quickly.  The interface also incorporates an easy way to enter parameters that control the workflow in the BioAssemblyBot® including pressure flow rates by material type, acceleration and deceleration of the robotic arm, etc.”


What do you think is the immediate future of bioprinting in terms of feasible commercial applications?

“We will remain in the early adopters phase for the immediate future.  Applications like the VIPM, however, that can demonstrate 3D printing functional use, benefit and value, will begin to advance the science and the industry in an accelerated way for both research and clinical applications.  There is a high level of “We don’t know what we don’t know?” in the world today with 3D bioprinting and biofabrication.  So we need to continue to innovate tools and processes in a way that enables the community to fail faster.  The faster we fail, the quicker we find our way to the breakthrough solution that truly advances the science and provides beneficial use to humanity.”

What is in the immediate future of Advanced Solutions and BioAssemblyBot in terms of technological evolution?

“Advanced Solutions is committed to research and development in all aspects of our business model.  We have a long road of technology innovation ahead of us with both our hardware and software platforms that will result in best, faster, and higher benefit to our customers.  We will also continue to use our own tools and innovations in our Life Sciences Lab to help advance the science.”

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Davide Sher

Since 2002, Davide has built up extensive experience as a technology journalist, market analyst and consultant for the additive manufacturing industry. Born in Milan, Italy, he spent 12 years in the United States, where he completed his studies at SUNY USB. As a journalist covering the tech and videogame industry for over 10 years, he began covering the AM industry in 2013, first as an international journalist and subsequently as a market analyst, focusing on the additive manufacturing industry and relative vertical markets. In 2016 he co-founded London-based VoxelMatters. Today the company publishes the leading news and insights websites and, as well as VoxelMatters Directory, the largest global directory of companies in the additive manufacturing industry.

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