Tom Stein is a guy with lots of ideas who has always loved making things, and wanted to start his own business. Following the advice of a mentor to build on the idea with the most value, he founded Trivance Design, LLC which aims to improve human health by encouraging more students to pursue STEM careers. Trivance Design assembles open-source hardware and software into affordable science curricula, allowing students and faculty to 3D print living cells in their courses.

While the courseware is proprietary, by offering open-source designs and packages built from off-the-shelf products, Tom hopes to make bioprinting accessible to students beyond elite, well-funded four-year universities, and make a significant impact on human health. Trained as an organic chemist, with 20 years in the biotech industry developing general research tools at ThermoFisher and Lonza, Tom is seizing the opportunity to accelerate advances in regenerative medicine.

The initial inspiration for Trivance Design came from his sideline business 3D-printing plastic parts for a service platform headquartered in the Netherlands. When they changed their business model and cut ties with Tom, he modified his robots and pivoted his company toward bioprinting. As someone who has always liked building stuff, Tom sees that once you understand how something works, you can build something new. At some point, printing living cells will advance to the creation of replacement organs to save lives. Tom hopes to help make that day come a little bit earlier.

Written by: Tamar Osterman, BOD Media Chair