Interview with Dr. Jing Lim, CTO Osteopore, Singapore

Dr. Lim holds a Ph.D. from Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. Prior to joining Osteopore, Dr. Lim conducted research on biomaterials for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine and developed material fabrication platforms. Dr. Lim published 14 articles in internationally peer-reviewed journals at that time. Dr. Lim joined Osteopore in December 2014 and has led Osteopore to important regulatory and quality milestones. In addition, Dr. Lim led the expansion of product and therapy portfolio and contributed to the improvement in manufacturing efficiency. Dr. Lim will be participating in the virtual 3DHEALS/NAMIC 2020 Summit on September 18th.

Jenny: When was the first encounter you had with 3D printing?

Jing: When I was conducting my research in composite scaffolds back in 2011. It is an exciting field of research that is very dynamic, with new research findings being reported frequently. At the time, I was thinking about how it would be possible to use such scaffolds in a clinical setting. 

Jenny: What inspired you to start your journey in bioprinting?

Jing: I have always been interested in the field of medicine and how we can further advance patient care. When I was presented with the opportunity to work in a company that is focused on providing 3D printed implants for enhanced patient care, I took it without hesitation. 

Jenny: Who inspired you the most along this journey in 3D printing (bio-printing/bio-fabrication)?

Jing: This can be a mentor, a patient, a celebrity, anyone basically. You can name more than one as well. Jing: My interest began when I was looking at how to create prosthetics for athletes, one of them being the now-disgraced Oscar Pistorius, the “Blade Runner”.  Closer to heart, my mentors at work have been my other source of inspiration. 

Osteopore bioprinted scaffold biomimetic and bioresorbable 3D printed mplants
Osteopore 3D bioprinted biomimetic and bioresorbable 3D printed implants

Jenny: What motivates you the most for your work?

Jing: Seeing the product that we developed bring care and relief to the patient, bring a smile to the patient and their family. 

Jenny: What is the biggest obstacle in your line of work? If you have conquered them, what were your solutions?

Jing: The biggest obstacle has to be working within the confines of the regulations and standards to be as competitive as the incumbents. I think for us so far, the key is to be thoughtful in our approach in product development and committed to the cause of enhancing patient care. 

Jenny: What do you think is the biggest challenge in 3D Printing/bio-printing? What do you think the potential solutions are?

Jing: I think that this is largely a nascent field, and there is a typical hype around such new technology. Due to the dynamic nature of 3D printing, there can be a lot of innovations but this also makes design control challenging to manage. If we are able to refine or deconstruct the design control process to make it relevant to a fluid workflow, that will probably help.  

Jenny: If you are granted three wishes by a higher being, what would they be?

Jing: More consistent or equal healthcare access for everyone 

Jenny: What advice would you give to a smart driven college student in the “real world”?

Jing: Be humble, and think of your glass as half-full, always. 

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