A Caulobacter crescentus microbicide protects from vaginal infection with HIV-1JR-CSF in Humanized Bone Marrow-Liver-Thymus Mice [Vaccines and Antiviral Agents]

Over 2 million people are infected with HIV-1 annually. Approximately half of these new infections occur in women residing in low-income countries, where their access to and control over HIV-1 preventative measures are often limited, indicating that female-controlled prevention options for HIV-1 are urgently needed. Microbicides that can be topically applied to the vaginal tract in advance of sexual activity represent a promising female-controlled prevention option for HIV-1. We have previously described the development of an HIV-1 specific microbicide using the Surface or S-layer recombinant protein display capabilities of the non-pathogenic, freshwater bacterium Caulobacter crescentus. Recombinant C. crescentus were created that displayed proteins that interfere with the HIV-1 attachment and entry process, and were able to provide significant protection of TZM-bl cells from infection with HIV-1 pseudovirus. These studies have been expanded to investigate if these recombinant C. crescentus are able to maintain efficacy with replication competent HIV-1 and both TZM-bl cells and human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs). In addition we utilized the humanized bone marrow-liver-thymus (BLT) mouse model to determine if vaginal application of recombinant C. crescentus at the time of HIV-1JR-CSF infection could provide protection from HIV-1 infection. Recombinant C. crescentus expressing Griffithsin, GB virus C E2 protein, elafin, α-1-antitrypsin, indolicidin and the fusion inhibitor T-1249 were able to protect 40-75% of the BLT mice from vaginal infection with HIV-1JR-CSF, with Cc-Griffithsin being the most effective. Taken together this data suggests that a C. crescentus based microbicide could be a safe and effective method for HIV-1 prevention.

Importance: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) disproportionally infects young women in sub-Saharan Africa. Current HIV-1 prevention options have had limited success among women, suggesting that alternative, female-controlled prevention options need to be developed. Microbicides that can be applied to the vaginal tract are a promising prevention option. In this study we describe testing of fifteen potential candidates to inhibit HIV-1 infection in a humanized mouse model of HIV-1. Four of these candidates were able to provide significant protection from vaginal infection with HIV-1, with the most successful candidate protecting 75% of the mice from infection. This study describes preclinical testing of a new strategy that could be a safe and effective option for HIV-1 prevention in women.

Lower Extremity Strength and Recovery Time in Youth Baseball Pitchers: A Pilot Study

The purpose of this study was to investigate the Little League pitching regulations by measuring the change in lower extremity force production after a pitching performance and the subsequent days of rest required for youth baseball pitchers to recover. Bilateral manual muscle testing of the gluteus maximus, hamstrings, gluteus medius, triceps surae, and quadriceps was conducted using a handheld dynamometer. Fifteen healthy, youth baseball pitchers (9.80 ± 1.08 years) threw a submaximal number of pitches and were tested prior to, immediately after, and for the next four consecutive days. Time in days required per muscle group to return to baseline force production levels were compared to Little League rest guidelines for pitchers. Results indicated that Little League rest requirements did not allow for sufficient recovery of lower extremity strength (p = 0.017). Results suggest that current Little League pitching guidelines provide an inadequate recovery period for youth pitchers, even when pitching a submaximal volume. Little League pitch count regulations and associated rest days may require revisions to avoid having youth athletes pitch while fatigued.
Corresponding Author: Associate Professor Azusa Pacific University Department of Kinesiology 701 E Foothill Blvd PO Box 7000 Azusa, CA 91702jlivingston@apu.edu Office: 626-815-6000 x5214 Fax: 626-815-5084
Copyright © 2019 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.

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Xenoantigen-dependent complement-mediated neutralization of LCMV glycoprotein pseudotyped VSV in human serum [Vaccines and Antiviral Agents]

Neutralization by antibodies and complement limits the effective dose and thus the therapeutic efficacy of oncolytic viruses after systemic application. We and others previously showed that pseudotyping of oncolytic rhabdoviruses like the maraba virus and the vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) with the lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus glycoprotein (LCMV-GP) results in only a weak induction of neutralizing antibodies. Moreover, LCMV-GP-pseudotyped VSV (VSV-GP) was significantly more stable in normal human serum (NHS) than VSV. Here, we demonstrate that depending on the cell line used for virus production, VSV-GP showed different complement sensitivities in non-immune NHS. The NHS-mediated titer reduction of VSV-GP was dependent on the activation of the classical complement pathway mainly by natural IgM antibodies against xenoantigens like galactose-α-(1,3)-galactose (α-Gal) or N-glycolylneuraminic acid (Neu5Gc) expressed on non-human production cell lines. VSV-GP produced on human cell lines was stable in NHS. However, VSV-GP generated in transduced human cells expressing α-Gal became sensitive for NHS. Furthermore, GP-specific antibodies induced complement-mediated neutralization of VSV-GP independent of the producer cell line, suggesting that complement regulatory proteins potentially acquired by the virus during the budding process are not sufficient to rescue the virus from antibody-dependent complement-mediated lysis. Thus, our study points to the importance of a careful selection of cell lines for viral vector production for clinical use.

IMPORTANCE Systemic application aims to deliver oncolytic viruses to tumors as well as to metastatic lesions. However, we found that xenoantigens incorporated onto the viral surface from non-human producing cell lines are recognized by natural antibodies in human serum and that the virus is thereby inactivated by complement lysis. Hence, to maximize the effective dose, careful selection of cell lines for virus production is crucial.

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TGF-{beta} acts as a regulatory molecule for lipogenic pathway among hepatitis C virus genotype specific infection [Virus-Cell Interactions]

Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection promotes metabolic disorders, and the severity of lipogenic disease depends upon the infecting virus genotype. Here, we have examined HCV genotype 1, 2, or 3 specific regulation of lipid metabolism, involving TGF-β regulated phospho-Akt and PPARα axes. Since HCV core protein is one of the key players in metabolic regulation, we also examined its contribution in lipid metabolic pathways. The regulatory molecules, TGF-β1/2, phospho-Akt (Ser473), PPARα, SREBP-1, FASN, hormone-sensitive lipase (HSL), and acyl dehydrogenases expression were analyzed in virus infected hepatocytes. Interestingly, HCV genotype 3a exhibited much higher activation of TGF-β and p-Akt, with a concurreent decrease in PPARα expression and fatty acid oxidation. A significant and similar decrease in HSL, unlike HCV genotype 1a, was observed with both genotype 2a and 3a. Similar observations were made from ectopic expression of the core genomic region from each genotype. The key role of TGF-β was further verified using specific siRNA. Together, our results highlighted a significant difference in TGF-β induced activity for HCV genotype 2a or 3a induced lipogenic pathway, exhibiting higher triglyceride synthesis and a decreased lipolytic mechanism. These results may help in therapeutic modalities for early treatment of HCV genotype associated lipid metabolic disorders.

IMPORTANCE Hepatic steatosis is a frequent complication associated with chronic HCV infection and is a key prognostic indicator for progression to fibrosis and cirrhosis. Several mechanisms are proposed for the development of steatosis, especially with HCV genotype 3a. Our observations suggest that TGF-β and PPARα associated mechanistic pathway differ in HCV genotypes 2a and 3a infected hepatocytes from genotype 1a. The results suggested a targeted therapeutic approach for enhanced PPARα and lipolysis may reduce HCV genotype associated lipid metabolic disorder in liver disease.

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Changes in endogenous and exogenous Koala Retrovirus (KoRV) subtype expression over time reflects koala health outcomes [Genetic Diversity and Evolution]

Koala retrovirus (KoRV) is unique in that it exists as both an exogenous and actively endogenizing gamma-retrovirus of koalas. While nine subtypes of KoRV have been recognized, focused study of these subtypes in koalas over time and with different health outcomes has been lacking. Therefore, in this study, three wild koala cohorts were established and monitored to examine KoRV proviral and expression data from koalas that either remained healthy over time, began healthy before developing chlamydial cystitis or presented with chlamydial cystitis and were treated with antibiotics. Deep sequencing of the proviral KoRV envelope gene revealed KoRV-A, -B, -D and -F to be the major subtypes in this population and allowed for subtype-specific assays to be created. Quantification of KoRV transcripts revealed that KoRV-D expression mirrored the total KoRV expression levels (106 copies/ml of plasma), with KoRV-A and KoRV-F expression being ~10-fold less and KoRV-B expression being ~100-fold less, when detected. Strikingly, there was significantly higher expression of KoRV-D in healthy koalas compared to koalas that developed chlamydial cystitis, with healthy koalas expressing a major KoRV-D/minor KoRV-A profile, whereas koalas that developed cystitis had variable KoRV expression profiles. Total anti-KoRV IgG antibody levels were found not to correlate with the expression of total KoRV or any individual KoRV subtype. Finally, KoRV expression was consistent between systemic and mucosal body sites and during antibiotic treatment. Collectively, this gives a comprehensive picture of KoRV dynamics during several important koala health states.

IMPORTANCE The long-term survival of the koala is under serious threat, with this iconic marsupial being declared vulnerable’ by the Australian Government and officially listing it as a threatened species. KoRV is clearly contributing to the overall health status of koalas and research into this virus has been lacking detailed study of the multiple subtypes at both the proviral and expressed viral levels over time. By designing new subtype-specific assays and following well-defined koala cohorts over time, this study has generated a new, more complete picture of KoRV and its relationship to koala health outcomes in the wild. Only by building a comprehensive picture of KoRV during both koala health and disease can we bring meaningful koala health interventions into better focus.

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Design and use of Chikungunya virus replication templates utilizing mammalian and mosquito RNA polymerase I mediated transcription. [Genome Replication and Regulation of Viral Gene Expression]

Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) is a mosquito-borne alphavirus. It has a positive sense RNA genome that also serves as the mRNA for four non-structural proteins (nsPs) representing subunits of the viral replicase. Coupling of nsP and RNA synthesis complicates analysis of viral RNA replication. We developed trans-replication systems, where production of replication competent RNA and expression of viral replicase are uncoupled. Mammalian and mosquito RNA polymerase I promoters were used to produce non-capped RNA templates, which are poorly translated relative to CHIKV replicase generated capped RNAs. It was found that, in human cells, constructs driven by RNA polymerase I promoters of human and Chinese hamster origin performed equally well. In contrast, RNA polymerase I promoters from Aedes mosquitoes exhibited strong species specificity. In both mammalian and mosquito cells, novel trans-replicase assays had exceptional sensitivity, with up to 105-fold higher reporter expression in the presence of replicase relative to background. Using this highly sensitive assay to analyse CHIKV nsP1 functionality, several mutations that severely reduced, but did not completely block, CHIKV replicase activity were identified: (i) tagging the N-terminus of nsP1 with eGFP; (ii) mutations D63A and Y248A blocking the RNA capping; (iii) mutation R252E affecting nsP1 membrane anchoring. In contrast, a mutation in the nsP1 palmitoylation site completely inactivated CHIKV replicase in both human and mosquito cells and was lethal for the virus. Our data confirms that this novel system provides a valuable tool to study CHIKV replicase, RNA replication and virus-host interactions.

IMPORTANCE Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) is a medically important pathogen responsible for recent large-scale epidemics. The development of efficient therapies against CHIKV has been hampered by gaps in our understanding of how non-structural proteins (nsPs) function to form the viral replicase and replicate virus RNA. Here we describe an extremely sensitive assay to analyse the effects of mutations on virus RNA synthesis machinery in both cells of mammalian (host) and mosquito (vector) origin. Using this system several lethal mutations in CHIKV nsP1 were shown to reduce but not completely block the ability of its replicase to synthesize viral RNAs. However, in contrast to related alphaviruses, CHIKV replicase was completely inactivated by mutations preventing palmitoylation of nsP1. These data can be used to develop novel, virus-specific antiviral treatments.

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The Problem With Printer Profile Libraries

3D printing parameters seen in Simplify3D [Source: Simplify3D]

A new strategy by some vendors to provide 3D printer profiles may backfire.

There’s a new strategy being employed by some vendors who hope to ensure more 3D print success and ease of use in the workplace: print profile libraries. Generally, this is a very good move, but there could be problems as things evolve into the future.

The idea here is that in order to achieve success for a given 3D print job, there will be an optimum set of 3D printing parameters. These parameters are a combination of literally hundreds of fields that instruct the 3D print slicing system on how to go about generating GCODE.

The parameters may have to do with temperature, speeds and feed rates, and could vary considerably over different layers, geometries and other factors. It can be extraordinarily complex to find the optimum set that can, time after time, produce quality 3D prints.

The first set of desktop 3D printers that emerged around a decade ago provided literally nothing. Operators had to somehow discover the best combinations of factors for their devices. This was made even more complex because most of the devices were kits that were assembled in slightly different ways by each operator.

Using 3D Print Profiles

Then manufacturers began to attach basic print profiles to their equipment. This greatly increased print reliability and enabled operators to get going far more rapidly than before.

However, there was a problem: print profiles are essentially a match between a specific machine model and a specific material. This meant that manufacturers would typically post profiles for their equipment only for very specific materials, usually their own or those from their close partners.

Of course, 3D printer operators wanted to and did in fact use all kinds of different materials from different materials vendors. Typically the materials from a 3D printer manufacturer, although certified, often have far less choice than is available in the wider market. This was particularly exacerbated with the introduction of countless new engineering materials used by professionals.

Now the problem was back at the manufacturers, who could not effectively sell into the professional market where they could not easily organize the right sets of materials and profiles to help their clients get printing.

Thus began a phenomenon that is still unfolding today: the introduction of print profile libraries. There are several companies now executing this strategy, with perhaps the most notable being Ultimaker. It’s actually a great idea, because it genuinely does help operators achieve success, or at least significantly reduce the probability of print failure.

Print Profile Problems

But there is a potential dark side to this approach.

How, exactly, do these print profiles get created? There are a couple of ways:

The 3D printer manufacturer could do so themselves in their lab. This would require materials vendors to send in samples, which would then be “dialed in” by experts to result in the print profile for that material. This is perhaps the most technically correct approach, but for the manufacturer it is quite expensive, as there is a constant and increasing flow of new and unusual materials to deal with.

User Submitted 3D Print Profiles

A second approach is to simply have the materials vendors — or any third party — submit the profile to the library. It’s in their interest to do so, as it could help materials sales, and is a lot less expensive for the 3D printer manufacturer. In most cases this could be a suitable solution, but there is the possibility that it could be wrong.

What if slightly off parameters were in the library for a material? What would the operators think after using them and finding flaws in their prints or even print failures? This is not a good scenario, as their trust in the entire print profile library would be compromised.

It seems that a hybrid approach should be used: third parties submit profiles to the 3D printer manufacturer, who then tests them to ensure they work properly. Only then should they be made available to the public in the library.

It is no doubt quite tempting for a 3D printer manufacturer wishing to “catch up” by quickly building a large profile library through the second approach, but in the end they may be causing harm to their users and to their brand.

Let’s all try to use the best 3D print parameters, shall we?

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PLASTEC East Expo and 3D Printing: A Review

Expo Showcase [Source: Advanced Manufacuring New York]

Steve Kelly, Liam Nixon and Cameron Torti of R&D Tax Savers review 3D printing as seen at the recent PLASTEC East Expo.

From June 11th-13th, six trade shows featuring over 550 companies from medical design, manufacturing, automation, packaging and more set up their displays at the Javits Convention Center in NYC. Cameron Torti, Liam Nixon, and Steve Kelly were in attendance on June 11th and 13th representing R&D Tax Savers to learn more about what these industries have to offer.

The PLASTEC East and 3D printing booths were in adjacent locations within the Javits Center. We were surprised to see only around 20 companies make up the PLASTEC East portion of the event. Nonetheless, the PLASTEC East companies that we did speak to were impressive. The displays of the 3D printing companies were very intriguing. There were both 3D printers and 3D printed items on display. Some items included everyday household items such as an Xbox controller skin and a razor. There were also scanners on display that scanned models that were uploaded as CAD files ready to be 3D printed. Overall, the marketing push seems to have migrated from 3D printing as a prototyping tool, to one used for solving real problems in manufacturing and assembly.

The six trade shows featured at the event [Source: Advanced Manufacuring New York ]

The six trade shows featured at the event [Source: Advanced Manufacuring New York]

There were several design and manufacturing companies adjacent to the 3D printing area. Throughout the middle of the Javits Center, the majority of the event was populated with MD&M East, showcasing medical design and manufacturing companies. Lastly, the other side of the venue housed the ATX East and EastPack companies. Although the majority of exhibitors were from the United States, we did meet numerous companies from Asia, including China and Israel. Overall, the event was definitely worthwhile, as it featured cutting-edge technologies in the fields of plastics, 3D printing, manufacturing, and more.

Notable Companies

Onshape

Onshape is a company that was on display in the 3D printing section of the event. They are a CAD company that utilizes cloud computing and data management to offer to customers an online collaboration space, similar to Google Drive, but with more advanced capabilities. Their trade show display included a computer with their software, which immediately caught our eyes. Onshape provides companies with a state-of-the-art collaboration space in an industry that is looking very bright for designers in the future.

Sample Onshape interface [Source: Onshape ]

Sample Onshape interface [Source: Onshape]

Cimquest Inc.

Cimquest is a multi-state 3D printing reseller that R&D Tax Savers has previously reported on. They are currently offering new 3D printers ranging from entry-level to industrial use, Mastercam (which delivers CAD/CAM software tools for all types of programming), a wide array of 3D scanners including handheld scanners, and Modelx3D, a CAE for plastics injection molding. On the show floor, they were exhibiting a Desktop Metal 3D printer and 3D models being scanned live.

3D Hubs

3D Hubs is a manufacturing company that utilizes CAD technology to manufacture parts on demand for customers. Customers utilize the online interface to submit designs for their parts, along with materials used and specifications. Drawings can also aid in this process. 3D Hubs then gives these customers a quote for each unit of the parts the customer may order. 3D Hubs provides customers with an easy way of producing their parts and communicating what exactly they want created. 3D Hubs has produced over 2 million parts worldwide. When speaking with a representative, they noted that CNC Milling was the fastest growing sector on their platform.

Sample 3D Hubs order interface [Source: 3D Hubs ]

Sample 3D Hubs order interface [Source: 3D Hubs]

Plastics Services Network (PSN)

Plastics Services Network (PSN) is an engineering company that is centered on product and material development in the markets of industrial goods, transportation, consumer products, healthcare, and energy. Beyond product and material development, PSN offers services in the areas of processing, testing and analysis, and engineering support. PSN started their firm in plastics, but they have now expanded beyond just plastics to new heights in all areas of engineering.

Global 3D Systems, Inc. (G3D)

One of the fastest growing 3D printing companies on NASDAQ, G3D’s aim is to provide the highest quality desktop 3D printers at the best value. Their new T-1000 model boasts an industry-leading 2.6+ inches/hour, while maintaining 120 µm to 7.5 µm Quality. It is also economic in terms of space. Their printers are also compatible with any web browsing device.

G3D on display [Source: G3D ]

G3D on display [Source: G3D]

Keyence

Keyence was in attendance and was demonstrating several new technologies for quality assurance and control. Most notable was a new Instant Measuring system that operates similar to 3D scanners by projecting light onto the surface. The IM-7030 coupled with Keyence’s software was able to generate full 3D scans and profiles of a component. This is a promising development towards industrial quality control that may be used in 3D printing industries.

The Research & Development Tax Credit

Enacted in 1981, the now permanent Federal Research and Development (R&D) Tax Credit allows a credit that typically ranges from 4%-7% of eligible spending for new and improved products and processes. Qualified research must meet the following four criteria:

  • Must be technological in nature

  • Must be a component of the taxpayer’s business

  • Must represent R&D in the experimental sense and generally includes all such costs related to the development or improvement of a product or process

  • Must eliminate uncertainty through a process of experimentation that considers one or more alternatives

Eligible costs include U.S. employee wages, cost of supplies consumed in the R&D process, cost of pre-production testing, U.S. contract research expenses, and certain costs associated with developing a patent.

On December 18, 2015, President Obama signed the PATH Act, making the R&D Tax Credit permanent. Since 2016, the R&D credit has been used to offset Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) for companies with revenue below $50MM and, startup businesses can obtain up to $250,000 per year in payroll tax cash rebates.

Conclusion

Overall, R&D Tax Savers was very impressed with all of the latest engineering developments put on display at the Javits Center. These displays stretched across multiple industries, including plastics, manufacturing, packaging, medical device manufacturing, and 3D printing. Work in these areas may lead to qualification for the now-permanent Research and Development Tax Credit.

Javits Center [Source: Wiki ]

Javits Center [Source: Wiki]

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Can Monitoring Training Load Deter Performance Drop-off During Off-season Training in Division III American Football Players?

Kildow, AR, Wright, G, Reh, RM, Jaime, S, and Doberstein, S. Can monitoring training load deter performance drop-off during off-season training in Division III American football players? J Strength Cond Res XX(X): 000–000, 2019—The primary aim of this observational investigation was to monitor performance of Division III American football players during off-season training while the secondary aim was to investigate differences in training adaptations between linemen and nonline players. Twenty-three subjects from the university’s football team were recruited from an Exercise Science 100 conditioning class to participate in a 15-week off-season training program. Phase I consisted of concurrent strength and speed/endurance training (3–4 d·wk−1) for 7 weeks. Phase II consisted of strength training and spring football practice (3–4 d·wk−1) for 4 weeks. Countermovement jump, estimated one repetition maximum (1RM) bench press and back squat, 505 change of direction (COD), repeated 30-yard anaerobic sprint test (RAST), and body mass were all measured Pre, Mid, and Post training program. Two-way analysis of variance with repeated measures revealed no significant interaction between linemen and nonline players for all performance variables (p > 0.05). Over the course of the study, RSAT % decrement, 505 COD times, and estimated 1RM performance for bench and squat significantly improved (p ≤ 0.05). No significant changes were detected in CMJ, RSAT best time, or body mass. Results indicate that linemen and non-line players did not respond significantly different to the present training program. The 15-week training program produced improvements in COD skill, speed, anaerobic capacity, and muscular strength. Furthermore, all performance changes were maintained through the end of the study. Data from this study indicate that monitoring training load can give feedback to help augment performance and prevent performance decrements during the off-season.
Address correspondence to Ashley Kildow, akildow01@gmail.com.
Copyright © 2019 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.

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A Concrete Example: How 3D Printing Can Create Housing and Infrastructure

3D printed concrete footbridge created by United States Marines [Source: Defense Logistics Agency]

Charles Goulding and Liam Nixon of R&D Tax Savers examine concrete 3D printing.

Concrete 3D Printing: Homes and Infrastructure

3D printed concrete is being used to create both houses and infrastructure.

Housing is an area that has already had major breakthroughs in the area of concrete 3D printing. For instance, a circular, concrete home was created utilizing 3D printing technology in Russia. The home was created by Apis Cor, a company that specializes in producing equipment for construction by 3D printing. The home was constructed using a “crane-sized” 3D printer. In Latin America, the plans have already been made to create an entire neighborhood of 3D printed homes. The homes are expected to be produced at a similar pace as the home in Russia. These homes, which are being designed to alleviate homelessness, are low-cost and only 375 square feet. The neighborhood is being constructed for poor families. Lastly, scientists in Singapore designed and created a 3D printed bathroom in 12 hours and relied upon a specifically-designed concrete. These three examples highlight the increasingly-prevalent area of 3D printed homes. Cost-efficient 3D printed homes can definitely benefit not only people, but also the economy.

In addition to making strides in housing, there have also been relevant developments in infrastructure with regards to concrete 3D printing. On the west coast of the U.S., the University of New Mexico has started using two concrete 3D printers. They have big aspirations of utilizing this technology for bridges and buildings. Their efforts can prove to be valuable for implementing infrastructure more efficiently in the future. In New York City, a small company named Toggle plans to implement concrete 3D printing robots. These robots are a part of a larger cohort of industrial robots that Toggle plans to create to accelerate the effectiveness of infrastructure projects. Also, United States Marines have contributed to infrastructure innovation by 3D printing a footbridge utilizing concrete at California’s Camp Pendleton. For the Marines, their intention is for this structure to be the start of a large-scale infrastructure initiative that combats natural disasters. The Marines have also dabbled in other 3D printing projects, most notably a barracks building.

Concrete 3D Printing Market Segmentation

Unsurprisingly, homes and infrastructure make up the bulk of the world’s concrete 3D printing. Wise Guy Reports has published an extensive report on the global market for concrete 3D printing. According to this report, residential concrete 3D printing accounted for over 31 percent of the 2017 global market for 3D printing, while infrastructure accounted for almost 28 percent. This data means that nearly 60 percent of the market share of concrete 3D printing is for housing and infrastructure, clearly making them the two most prevalent areas of concrete 3D printing. 

Marget Segmentation Chart based upon the Wise Guy Reports data

Marget Segmentation Chart based upon the Wise Guy Reports data

Columbia University’s Strides in 3D Printing

 Strides in concrete 3D printing are being made all across the world, at many different organizations. Columbia University professor Shiho Kawashima has completed extensive work in the area of concrete 3D printing. She was awarded a CAREER Award from the National Science Foundation for her excellence in the field.

 In addition to concrete 3D printing work, Columbia has impressed with their breakthrough in wood 3D printing. Their researchers created replica wood material utilizing 3D printing technology. Their printed material is not far off from real wood.

Conclusion

The 3D printing industry has made major strides in numerous areas. More specifically, the concrete 3D printing industry has had multiple successful developments, particularly in housing and infrastructure. These two markets make up nearly 60 percent of the market share in concrete 3D printing. Columbia University has also completed substantial research in both concrete and wood 3D printing. Working on projects in the realm of 3D printing may result in qualification for the now-permanent R&D tax credit.

The Research & Development Tax Credit

Enacted in 1981, the now permanent Federal Research and Development (R&D) Tax Credit allows a credit that typically ranges from 4%-7% of eligible spending for new and improved products and processes. Qualified research must meet the following four criteria:

  • Must be technological in nature

  • Must be a component of the taxpayer’s business

  • Must represent R&D in the experimental sense and generally includes all such costs related to the development or improvement of a product or process

  • Must eliminate uncertainty through a process of experimentation that considers one or more alternatives

Eligible costs include U.S. employee wages, cost of supplies consumed in the R&D process, cost of pre-production testing, U.S. contract research expenses, and certain costs associated with developing a patent.

On December 18, 2015, President Obama signed the PATH Act, making the R&D Tax Credit permanent. Since 2016, the R&D credit has been used to offset Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) for companies with revenue below $50MM and, startup businesses can obtain up to $250,000 per year in payroll tax cash rebates.

 

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