Archived Webinar

Human Organs on Chips

Anthony Bahinski, PhD, MBA, FAHA
GlaxoSmithKline, King of Prussia, PA, United States

Development of safe and effective drugs is currently hampered by the poor predictive power of existing preclinical animal models that often lead to failure of drug compounds late in their development. Given the tremendous cost of drug development and the long timelines involved, major pharmaceutical companies and government funding agencies are now beginning to recognize a crucial need for new technologies that can quickly and reliably predict drug safety and efficacy in humans in preclinical studies. Advances in bioengineering, material sciences, microfabrication, and microfluidics technologies have enabled the development of microphysiological systems that mimic the functional units of an organ. Organs-on-Chips are microfluidic cell culture devices that contain hollow micrometer-sized chambers inhabited by living cells that recreate the specialized multicellular architectures, tissue-tissue interfaces, physicochemical microenvironments and vascular perfusion necessary to recapitulate organ-level physiology in vitro. Combined with the use of individual patient derived primary, or iPS-derived cells these systems hold promise for the development of more translational disease models and application in precision medicine and personalized health. These microsystems could potentially further our understanding of disease etiology and fill the critical need for improved model systems to predict efficacy, safety, bioavailability, and toxicology outcomes for candidate compounds.

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