Wednesday, 05 April 2023 12:20

Volkswagen Foundation funds organ-on-a-chip models for basic research Featured

As part of the program "Top Research for Lower Saxony", the Volkswagen Foundation is funding a joint project between several institutes at the Technical University of Braunschweig, the University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover (TiHo) as well as the Hannover Medical School (MHH). The team of scientists aims to develop functional units of tissues in a chip for basic research with the goal of replacing or at least reducing animal experiments for research into lung and intestinal diseases.

Prof. Stephan Reichl from the Institute of Pharmaceutical Technology and Biopharmacy at the Technical University (TU) Braunschweig as well as Prof. Andreas Dietzel from the Institute of Microtechnology at the TU Braunschweig are involved in the project. The two are developing a chip platform with integrated sensor technology in the size of a one-euro coin. Scientists at MHH and TiHo Hannover will then use these models to integrate and test their cell culture systems in these devices. Prof. Stefan Dübel from the Technical University of Braunschweig contributes antibodies based on his well-known phage display, which are used by the team for immunohistological analyses.

For basic research, the cooperation partners are replicating the human digestive tract (intestine, oral mucosa) and the respiratory tract. The results should be transferable to the clinical situation and also be commercially usable.  

The scientists will be able to use 3.6 million euros from the "Top Research for Lower Saxony" funding program of the Volkswagen Foundation.

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