With substantial investment and time, three-dimensional (3D) printing, which was once imaginable only in realms of science fiction, has well and truly become a reality. 3D printing, which refers to a number of manufacturing technologies generating a physical model from digital transformation, is essentially an additive technique. This technology holds huge potential for the pharmaceutical and medical companies, as it will allow these companies to create more specific drugs and enable rapid production of medical implants.
Let’s take a look at how 3D printing is shaping the MedTech space, while making it a lucrative sector for investors looking for long-term gains. How is 3D Printing Changing the Game in MedTech? In recent times, 3D anatomical models – tailored to a patient’s specific needs – are gaining prominence as useful tools in the present day practice of precision medicine and personalized treatments. Although 3D printing is still under development, it has been implemented in countless innovative ways in the medical space that stands to gain significantly from this technology. In the near future, there is a probability of 3D-printed implantable organs becoming a reality, thereby lowering the waiting lists and increasing the number of lives saved. No doubt, 3D printing has garnered a positive response from the companies in the MedTech space within healthcare. Per a report by Market Data Forecast, the global 3D printing medical devices market (estimated at $1.48 billion in 2018) is projected to reach $5.59 billion by 2023 growing at a CAGR of 30.5%. MedTech’s 3D Printing Feats so Far Although most of the sectors within MedTech are making substantial efforts to create innovative products in the growing and lucrative 3D printing market, we will take a look at two sectors making most of the trend. 3D printing has had a huge impact on the dental space, in terms of increased efficiency, costs reduction and quality improvement. Orthodontic models, dentures and crown and bridge models are some of solid dental models revolutionizing the dental industry. Per a report by Markets and Markets, the dental 3D printing market (valued at $1.39 billion in 2017) is expected to see a CAGR of 23.2% and reach $5.06 billion by 2023. Another sector grabbing attention is the orthopedic space, where 3D printing is finding increasing application in the development of customized surgical implants. Through 3D printing, manufacturers are being able to develop implants of customized sizes and shapes in a short time, improving efficacy and lowering the overall cost of surgeries. Per a report by Research and Markets, orthopedic 3D printing devices market is expected to witness a CAGR of around 26% by 2023. 3 Stocks Gaining Prominence in 3D Printing Stryker Corporation SYK is one of the early adopters of the 3D printing technology and has become a leader in 3D printed titanium implants. The company has been making efforts in the expansion of its Tritanium cages, including FDA-approved Tritanium TL Curved Posterior Lumbar Cage. This is a 3D-printed interbody fusion cage intended for use as an aid in lumbar fixation. This Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) company has a long-term earnings growth rate of 9.8%. For 2019, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for revenues is pegged at $14.87 billion, indicating an improvement of 9.3% from the year-ago period. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Year to date, Stryker’s shares gained 40.4%, outperforming the
industry’s rally of 16.9%. Medtronic plc MDT has been making continued investments in 3D printing technology to stay ahead of the curve. Notably, in 2018, the company launched a titanium 3D printed platform – TiONIC technology – enabling more complex designs and integrated surface technologies for spine surgery implants. Further, Medtronic uses Stratasys’ ( SSYS Quick Quote SSYS - Free Report) 3D printing solutions for medical tools, functional prototypes. The company has a long-term earnings growth rate of 7.3%. For 2019, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for revenues is pegged at $31.50 billion, suggesting growth of 3.1% from the year-ago period. The company carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Shares of Medtronic gained 21.3% year to date, outperforming the industry’s growth of 16.8%. Last year, Orthofix Medical Inc. OFIX announced the FDA approval and U.S. limited launch of the Forza XP Expandable Spacer System. This system consists of 3D printed porous titanium endplates, which enable the patient's bone to grow into the porous plate. Orthofix has a long-term earnings growth rate of 10%. For 2019, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for revenues is pegged at $473.7 million, indicating growth of 4.6% from the year-ago period. The company carries a Zacks Rank of 3. Over the last three months, shares of Orthofix gained 1.1%, outperforming the industry’s growth of 0.8%.
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