Cosmetic and pharmaceutical research labs need novel tools and methodologies to conduct in vitro safety, efficacy and disease studies in a more efficient, reliable and ethical way, without using animals, to reach the market faster while lowering their R&D expenses. Current methods include in-vivo animal tests and in-vitro cells viability-based assays which fail to provide accurate and reliable results. We have developed a novel platforms for creating realistic human tissue models in the lab by mimicking the function of the blood flow so that natural tissue properties are established, and for automating the testing procedures for cost-effective ex vivo and in vitro screening.
The solution includes three complementary products: The microfluidic devices: we developed two novel microfluidic devices custom-designed for use with tissue explants and to culture 3D tissues, respectively. The testing platform: designed for use with the microfluidic devices, it features a pumping system and a benchtop fraction collector. The latter is a modular system that can enable temperature control, automated collection of samples and electrical measurements. The skin models kits: we offer our microfluidic devices in ready-to-use kits that include skin explants or full-thickness 3D skin cultures. The tissue or organ model is loaded or grown directly in the microfluidic chip with a continuous flow of nutrients and reagents, and the collection of the outflow is performed automatically with a bespoke fraction collector. When tissue explants/biopsies are loaded in the microfluidic chip, the system enables a high level of automation of the testing procedure, higher precision in permeation experiments and reduces unstirred water layers. When used for 3D cell culture, the cell differentiation and the structure and morphology of the reconstructed tissue is improved. For example, we demonstrated that full-thickness skin equivalents with enhanced epidermal morphogenesis and barrier function could be reconstructed within the chip.
This technology enables preclinical non-animal studies with higher relevance and throughput, a 10 fold reduction in biomaterial consumption and in specialized manpower. Our customers are contract research organizations, research laboratories, ingredient providers, and pharma and cosmetic manufacturers. Leveraging on the advantages of these products, we also offer safety and efficacy testing, such as permeation, irritation and disease studies.