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The Approach

  1. Testing. Knowing the location of the virus is the first step in stopping it, and rapidly scaling the volume of testing is necessary.
  2. Rapid Personal Protection Equipment (PPE). Frontline fighters need to be kept safe and healthy during the initial wave so they can keep fighting.
  3. Robust PPE. More durable solutions are needed that can be worn for long periods of time, reused, and provide full protection.
  4. Patient devices. Based on the experience of other geographies, a critical shortage of life-saving patient devices, such as ventilators, can be expected. Markforged is trying to predict bottlenecks and creatively design around them.
  5. Supply chain/workflow optimization. In a fight like this, it’s all manufacturers on deck to supply critical items. As factory lines pivot and ramp, industrial 3D printers can quickly optimize supply chains and remove blockers. Markforged is standing by, ready to assist any manufacturer who needs help.

Markforged Solutions

Fiberflex Rayon

Fiberflex: 3D Printed Nasal Testing Swabs

The Problem: Testing people and identifying COVID-19 infected patients is a critical step in the fight to slow down the spread of the disease. As global testing capacity has ramped up, a new shortage has emerged -- the specialized swabs required to run the tests. Even worse, testing of commercial swabs has revealed a high rate of false-negative results.

The Solution: Markforged has partnered with Neurophotometrics to produce rayon wrapped nasopharyngeal (NP) swabs for COVID-19 testing. These swabs are ready for distribution and possess several key advantages over alternative solutions:

1. Nasopharyngeal swabs with fiber tips are preferred by the FDA for sampling specimens.

2. The swabs take less than three minutes to make.

3. Neurophotometrics, Rady’s Children’s Hospital San Diego, Scripps Research Institute, and the University of California San Diego tested these swabs in over fifty volunteers. Confirmed positive COVID-19 volunteers were re-tested three to fourteen days after their initial test with both the commercial swab and the 3D printed swab. Testing with the commercial swab detected the virus in most, but not all of the volunteers, while all of the 3D printed swabs detected it. This suggests that the 3D printed swab may be more efficient at collecting viral particles and may reduce the rate of false negatives.

4. The 3D printed design couples a 3D printed nylon swab base with a wrapped rayon tip to gather the viral specimens. The nasopharyngeal swabs must be both flexible enough to enter the nasal cavity and strong enough to withstand significant mechanical force or torsion without break or shear. These swabs have been evaluated to meet the mechanical demands of clinical use and assessed to be comparable to the mechanical performance of commercial swabs through tensile and torsional testing.

Markforged can currently produce 10,000 swabs/day and can scale to 100,000 swabs/day based on demand.

Status Update (4/7/2020): The 3D printed swabs completed clinical validation with the institutional review board (IRB) at Rady Children’s Hospital San Diego and the University of California San Diego this week, and the hospital has now ordered 30,000 swabs from Neurophotometrics to test patients within their facility.

Disclaimer
Markforged, Inc. ("Markforged") is engaged in the fight against COVID-19. In its efforts, Markforged brings to bear its considerable 3D printing know-how and capability to rapidly respond to emergent logistics and supply chain shortages particularly those affecting our healthcare providers and individuals at-risk of illness. Markforged is consulting with healthcare providers in many of Boston's world-renowned hospitals, and leading biotechnology and medical device companies to provide personal protective equipment, diagnostic test equipment, experimental 3D printing products, and information to users of its Markforged printers (the "Products") that are designed to provide a barrier, preventative, therapeutic and/or treatment for COVID-19.
Users, manufacturers, wearers, and patients and those associated with Products shall deem them safe for their intended purpose and agree that all access and use of Products is on an "As Is", "As Available" basis. Markforged specifically disclaims all warranties, express and implied related to Products, including without limitation any representations and warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, fitness for use; non-infringement; and compliance with any regulatory standards. Markforged is a manufacturer of 3D printers, consumable printing materials, software, and related services. Please consider obtaining counsel regarding compliance with use in regard to any local, state, or federal laws, regulations, or rules.

Fiberflex Flocked

3D Printed Nasal Testing Swabs

The Problem: Testing people and identifying COVID-19 infected patients is a critical step in the fight to slow down the spread of the disease. As global testing capacity has ramped up, a new shortage has emerged -- the specialized swabs required to run the tests.

The Solution: Markforged has developed novel flocked nasopharyngeal (NP) swabs for use in COVID-19 testing. These swabs have great potential to aid in the fight against COVID-19 for the following reasons:

1. Nasopharyngeal swabs with fiber tips are preferred by the FDA for sampling specimens.

2. Markforged swabs are a Nylon shaft flocked with Nylon fibers. Markforged’s proprietary flocking process radially aligns the fibers on the outer surface of the body of a flexible shaft. Such radial alignment of the flocking improves sample collection due to the increased surface area on the tip.

3 .Molecular diagnostics testing, typically PCR, is sensitive to reactivity and contamination. Since Markforged swabs do not contain adhesive, contamination risk is reduced.

4. The Nylon shaft is flexible — it has a bend radius that enables sample collection to be performed with minimal risk of fracture or breakage.

Status Update (4/7/2020): Markforged swabs are enrolled in multiple ongoing studies including programs at leading institutions such as UCSD, Rady Children’s Hospital, UCLA, Harvard, and BIDMC.

Disclaimer
Markforged, Inc. ("Markforged") is engaged in the fight against COVID-19. In its efforts, Markforged brings to bear its considerable 3D printing know-how and capability to rapidly respond to emergent logistics and supply chain shortages particularly those affecting our healthcare providers and individuals at-risk of illness. Markforged is consulting with healthcare providers in many of Boston's world-renowned hospitals, and leading biotechnology and medical device companies to provide personal protective equipment, diagnostic test equipment, experimental 3D printing products, and information to users of its Markforged printers (the "Products") that are designed to provide a barrier, preventative, therapeutic and/or treatment for COVID-19.
Users, manufacturers, wearers, and patients and those associated with Products shall deem them safe for their intended purpose and agree that all access and use of Products is on an "As Is", "As Available" basis. Markforged specifically disclaims all warranties, express and implied related to Products, including without limitation any representations and warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, fitness for use; non-infringement; and compliance with any regulatory standards. Markforged is a manufacturer of 3D printers, consumable printing materials, software, and related services. Please consider obtaining counsel regarding compliance with use in regard to any local, state, or federal laws, regulations, or rules.

3D Printed Face Shields

3D Printed Face Shields

The Problem: Face shields are critical in the fight against infectious disease: they shield eyes (an infection vector) and help to extend the lives of N95 masks by shielding them from direct droplet flow. Unfortunately, personal shields are in short supply and usually designed to be disposable. Because of this, medical professionals are either going without shields or using disposable shields long past their life expectancy.

The Solution: Markforged engineers have designed a reusable face shield that can be produced with any Markforged 3D printer. It consists of a 3D printed frame, a face shield cut from PETg, a piece of foam tape, and an off-the-shelf elastic band. The clear face shields can be removed and replaced in less than 30 seconds.

Status: To date, 1350+ face shields have been produced, which have been distributed to local hospitals and first responders for testing. This testing has been overwhelmingly positive and has provided some great feedback that will be incorporated into a second-generation design which will be released at a future time. Generation 1 design is open-sourced, meaning that Markforged customers and partners can print their own face shields.

Disclaimer
Markforged, Inc. ("Markforged") is engaged in the fight against COVID-19. In its efforts, Markforged brings to bear its considerable 3D printing know-how and capability to rapidly respond to emergent logistics and supply chain shortages particularly those affecting our healthcare providers and individuals at-risk of illness. Markforged is consulting with healthcare providers in many of Boston's world-renowned hospitals, and leading biotechnology and medical device companies to provide personal protective equipment, diagnostic test equipment, experimental 3D printing products, and information to users of its Markforged printers (the "Products") that are designed to provide a barrier, preventative, therapeutic and/or treatment for COVID-19.
Users, manufacturers, wearers, and patients and those associated with Products shall deem them safe for their intended purpose and agree that all access and use of Products is on an "As Is", "As Available" basis. Markforged specifically disclaims all warranties, express and implied related to Products, including without limitation any representations and warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, fitness for use; non-infringement; and compliance with any regulatory standards. Markforged is a manufacturer of 3D printers, consumable printing materials, software, and related services. Please consider obtaining counsel regarding compliance with use in regard to any local, state, or federal laws, regulations, or rules.