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On 7 April, the Baltic Biomaterials Centre of Excellence (BBCE) was opened at Rīga Stradiņš University (RSU). The centre is equipped with state-of-the-art research facilities and will further enhance RSU's research capacity.

The centre has two unique, advanced 3D printers for research. The modern equipment can create individual implants for bone replacements, anatomical models, and surgical guides. The models and guides are used in primary operations for facial trauma, to correct post-traumatic deformities, for reconstructive jaw surgery in patients with maxillofacial oncologies, and in dental autotransplantations. The cost of the centre's equipment comes to over €620 000 and is covered by ERDF*. The 155 m2-large premises were adapted for the BBCE through an investment of €216,714.73.

The BBCE project employs 14 high-level researchers at the RSU Institute of Stomatology, including PhD students and postdoctoral fellows, who conduct research and work on applying advanced biomaterials in clinical practice.

BBCE (GA No 857287) is an ambitious scientific capacity-building project that contributes to high quality research and to the development of new biomaterials for bone regeneration, maxillofacial surgery, orthopaedics, and other fields.

BBCE is a project funded by the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme, with the aim of taking biomaterials through the full development cycle, from material development in the laboratory to clinical application. Its main focus is to produce individual implants for bone regeneration. The directions being pursued at the RSU Institute of Stomatology include new 3D technologies such as individual planning and 3D printing.

The project is implemented by Riga Technical University (RTU), OSI, RSU, the RSU Institute of Stomatology, the AO Research Institute in Switzerland, and the Biomaterials Centre of Friedrich-Alexander Erlangen-Nürnberg University in Germany. It is funded by €15 million from the EU's Horizon 2020 programme and €15 million from the State, ERDF and project partners.

The centre is located in the RSU Institute of Stomatology building in Riga at 20 Dzirciema iela.

* Co-financing for the purchase of equipment and facilities is provided from ERDF funds within the framework of the SAM project "Development of pharmaceutical research infrastructure at Riga Stradins University". Project/contract No: