CDC uses HP bioprinters to speed up testing for new antibiotics

The pilot will help test effectiveness against superbugs.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention is turning to some bleeding edge tech in its bid to stamp out drug-resistant 'superbug' bacteria. It's buying a slew of HP bioprinters (the D300e you see above) as part of a pilot program that could speed up the testing of more effective antibiotics. The machines will give regional labs in New York, Minnesota, Tennessee and Wisconsin their first shot at printing drug samples used for developing and running antimicrobial susceptibility tests. Hospitals won't have to wait for testing or else risk mistakes like overusing drugs.

The testing will start at CDC's regional labs in the first quarter of HP's fiscal 2019 (between November and January). Its initial focus is on widely resistant bacteria. And HP won't be done once the bioprinters are in the Center's hands. HP will help the CDC study the success of the pilot, tweak it if needed, and explore the possibility of wider-scale printer uses if the test proves successful. This may become an instrumental part of fighting superbugs if all goes smoothly.