Researchers develop ‘heart-on-a-chip for drug research




Researchers at UC Berkeley report that they have successfully heart tissue to operate a chip. They have in addition, the tissue can test for sensitivity with certain existing medicaments.

The project team designed a so-called “organ-on-a-chip” in which heart tissue as functions that taste it to be run. A body-on-a-chip is covered by the big name ‘lab-on-a-chip’ which trials are doing relatively inexpensive manner. Many of these trials have yet to be carried out on animals now, but that is far from ideal because non-human animal models used in safety testing of drugs do not seem sufficient to human biology. heart-on-a-chip lab-on-a-chip organ-on-a-chip

The center-to-a-chip is not just a container with some heart tissue. The structure is designed so that it is similar to the geometry and the distance between the connective tissue in a human heart. The heart cells from human pluripotent stem cells. From this type of stem cell are multiple types to obtain tissue. These heart cells with different functions were stopped in a loading system on the chip, a system that one of the authors on the site of UC Berkeley compares with passengers who get on the subway during rush hour, in which all layers come in one direction parallel to lie.

Microfluidic channels on the chip to function as models for blood vessels, so that the exchange of nutrients and drugs may be imitated. In the future, may also be possible in this way, the waste is disposed of.

After 24 hours, the cells were beating heart at a normal speed. Then they added several commonly used the medication, such as beta-blockers. Because these are well studied medicine, they know exactly what they should do with the rhythm of the responses were correct. When a drug against slow heart rate, heart rate went up to 124 beats per minute.

In the future it should be possible to link more and more different organs in such mini-containers together to investigate even interact example, heart and liver. In recent years, the Lab-on-a-Chip research created a vast new field of research. Organs-on-Chips chips which various, mostly young, techniques are combined, such as microfluidics, microelectronics and micromechanics together with organ culture.

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