HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – CFD Research Corporation, CFDRC, has been awarded a $1.3M grant from the National Institutes of Health to further develop their novel in vitro Blood-Brain Barrier model. Building upon CFDRC’s patented and commercially available SynVivo platform, SynVivo-BBB is a cell-based microchip which allows co-culture of endothelial cells under physiological flow with neuronal and glial cells mimicking the in vivo environment.
Delivery of protective or therapeutic agents to the brain poses a major challenge, largely due to the presence of the blood-brain barrier. Current in vitro BBB models lack real-time visualization and do not reproduce critical micro-environmental features such as anatomical size and blood flow-induced shear stress. In contrast, CFDRC‘s SynVivo-BBB permits real-time visualization of transport and permeation of drugs across the BBB under physiologically realistic microcirculatory conditions.
“Developing neurological therapeutic agents for the brain presents an added complexity because the drugs not only have to be effective for target use, but also have to be capable of crossing the blood-brain barrier.” said Prabhakar Pandian, Ph.D., the principal investigator. “Recent advances in nanotechnology promise new ways to cross the blood-brain barrier but they need to be evaluated under realistic and dynamic conditions. Our technology, for the first time, allows rapid screening of drug candidates in a physiologically relevant in vitro environment.”
“The SynVivo-BBB platform,” said Kapil Pant, Ph.D., director of CFDRC’s biomedical technology division, “offers greater throughput, increased library coverage, lower cost, rapid turnaround times and increased mechanistic knowledge, all of which benefit drug discovery and efficacy efforts.”
As part of this National Institute of General Medical Sciences grant, CFDRC will optimize the platform to enhance physiological fidelity, add label-free monitoring, implement dysfunctional BBB and further validate the in vitro platform against in vivo studies. This study brings together scientists and engineers from CFDRC with Michael Aschner, Ph.D., from Vanderbilt University, and Clinton Stewart, Pharm.D. from St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Memphis, to develop the platform and demonstrate the technology.
For more information about CFDRC’s SynVivo family of products visit www.cfdrc.com/synvivo or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
“I never set out to be a professor and researcher; I sort of stumbled into that job. However, I always wanted to know more about nature because I loved animals, rocks, planets, stars, fish, etc. So, in school I took a lot of science courses and along the way I just kept narrowing my focus as I found out what areas of science I liked.” —Dr. Kim Caldwell
“Fall in love with biology, chemistry, math and computer classes early. I use my degree every day. Biology–specimens/cell division; chemistry-mixing and usage of reagents in our protocols; math–measuring DNA; computers–capturing and karyotyping chromosomes.”
“I choose this career because I really enjoy the fast pace changes of science and genetics and I like to help people. I wanted a career that would allow me to be in healthcare but I was not interested in being a physician or nurse or working in a research laboratory setting.”
“I travel independently throughout the community to inspect food processing plants, hotels, restaurants, day care and nursing home food service facilities, jails, schools, night clubs and even body art facilities. Every day I am out meeting new people and seeing different things.”
“As a medical epidemiologist working at a state health department, I have investigated acute disease outbreaks; reviewed and analyzed data from reported, notifiable disease cases; and planned and implemented intervention measures to reduce the occurrence of preventable communicable diseases.”
“Computational biology is an exciting interdisciplinary field of research that integrates concepts from statistics, mathematics, computer science, and physics to solve problems in biology and biomedical research.”
“As a biochemical geneticist, my work specifically focuses on the diagnosis of inherited metabolic disorders, which typically afflict infants and young children, and often cause severe, even life threatening symptoms.”
“Did I choose the career or did the career choose me? That is an interesting question. I have always been interested in science, and grew up on a farm. So the marriage of science and agriculture was a natural for me.”