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Visit 5: Systems Biomedicine and ICT

Discover the HuMiX “Gut on a chip” device, which for the first time sheds light on the complex interaction between bacteria and the cells of the human gut ex vivo, find out about ITTM (Information Technology for Translational Medicine), the LCSB’s most recent spin-off and explore the 3D Neuroculture “brain-on-a-chip” device, designed to generate a biologically realistic and economically efficient route to model human or animal neuronal tissue for drug screening, testing and development in a high-throughput fashion.

   

The research of the LCSB is centred on neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s disease and on the description of diseases as complex networks. The LCSB fosters collaboration with industrial partners and is committed to spinning-off promising projects into companies. The visit will feature:

  • The HuMiX “Gut on a chip” device that has been developed at the LCSB in collaboration with the University of Arizona and the CRP Lippmann (joint patent pending). The technology allows for the first time efficient and ex vivo analysis of human and animal microbiome dynamics. The HuMiX technology could ultimately lead to the development of new drugs and diagnostics, re-classification of existing drugs, as well as the development of new functional foods.
  • The ITTM (Information Technology for Translational Medicine) spin-off: ITTM is a data curation consulting service company leveraging the combined results of clinical studies and high dimensional biotechnology based on open-source tools and public-domain data. Although biomedical data from research studies and clinical trials hold the potential for novel scientific findings, new drugs and personalized therapies, their sheer mass, complexity, and often low quality prohibit their efficient use. The services offered by ITTM, namely biomedical data curation, hosting, analysis and archiving, help clients from pharma and biotech companies as well as public research institutes to make use of biological and medical data sets that are not accessible to standard data analysis.
  • The 3D Neuroculture “brain-on-a-chip” device: Drug development depends on excellent, scalable human cell culture models. The LCSB has recently established the differentiation of human neuroepithelial stem cells into neurons within three-dimensional microfluidic cell culture bioreactors for this purpose. These could replace the current state-of-the-art method of macroscopic in vitro cultures of induced pluripotent stem cell-derived neurons that consume excessive amounts of expensive reagents and are typically based on batch fed, two dimensional cell culture. This new in vitro model integrates the latest developments in developmental biology and microfluidic cell culture to generate a biologically realistic and economically efficient route to model human or animal neuronal tissue for drug screening, testing, and development in a high-throughput fashion.

You will also get an overview of the research and innovation strategy of the LCSB and a guided tour through its labs and data centre.

Read more: LCSB website