Skin-on-a-Chip and EpiIntestinal-on-a-BioChip at ESTIV 2018

Welcome our talk “Skin-on-a-chip with an automated air-liquid interface” and our poster “EpiIntestinal on a BioChip” at the 20th International Congress on In Vitro Toxicology (ESTIV 2018) in Berlin.


Skin-on-a-chip with an automated air-liquid interface
Wiest J., Eggert S., Alexander F.A.

We present a label-free solution that leverages the use of the intelligent mobile lab for in vitro diagnostics (IMOLA-IVD), a noninvasive, sensor-based platform, to monitor the transepithelial electrical resistance (TEER) of RhE models and adherent cells cultured on porous membrane inserts. Murine fibroblasts cultured on polycarbonate membranes were first used as a test model to optimize procedures using a custom BioChip encapsulation design, as well as dual fluidic configurations, for continuous and automated perfusion of membrane-bound cultures. Extracellular acidification rate (EAR) and TEER of membrane-bound L929 cells were monitored. The developed protocol was then used to monitor the TEER of MatTek EpiDermTM RhE models over a period of 48 h [1].

1 Alexander, F., Eggert, S., Wiest, J.: Skin-on-a-chip: Transepithelial electrical resistance and extracellular acidification measurements through an automated air-liquid interface, Genes, 9/2, 114; doi:10.3390/genes9020114 (2018).


EpiIntestinal on a BioChip

Wiest, J., Schmidt, Ch., Markus, J., Kandarova, H.

Microphysiometry showed to be a useful tool to monitor the energy metabolism of living cells and its interaction with living cells. In the past the technique was mainly used for monitoring of 2D monolayers of living cells [1]. Recently, our group showed that it is also possible to monitor 3D hepatocyte spheroids [2] as well as the extracellular acidification rate (EAR) and transepithelial electrical resistance (TEER) of 3D skin constructs in an automated assay maintaining an air liquid interface (ALI) with the IMOLA-IVD technology [3]. In this work we present an Intestine-on-a-BioChip by monitoring EAR and TEER of the MatTek 3D-small intestinal tissue model (EpiIntestinal) for 12 h. A periodic cycle of 96 min ALI, 10 min TEER measurement and 15 min washing step was used. The test substance (Triton-X) was applied after 8 h of measurement. After application of the tests substance a reduction of the EAR and the change in TEER could be monitored. To be able to monitor the EAR a low buffered basal medium was used. The presented work shows a proof of principle of automated monitoring of EAR and TEER at a 3D intestine model maintaining an automated ALI. The EpiIntestinal model on the IMOLA-IVD chip is a promising research tool for the use in the field of toxicology, cellular metabolism studies or drug absorption research.

1 Brischwein M., Wiest J. In: Bioanalytical Reviews, Springer, doi:10.1007/11663-2018-2 (2018).

2 Alexander, F., Eggert, S., Wiest, J.: A novel lab-on-a-chip platform for spheroid metabolism monitoring, Cytotechnology, 70/1, 375-386, doi:10.1007/s10616-017-0152-x (2018).

3 Alexander, F., Eggert, S., Wiest, J.: Skin-on-a-chip: Transepithelial electrical resistance and extracellular acidification measurements through an automated air-liquid interface, Genes, 9/2, 114; doi:10.3390/genes9020114 (2018).

Microphysiometry of Intestinal Epithelium at EUSAAT 2018

Please visit our poster “EpiIntestinal on a Chip: Label-free Microphysiometry of Intestinal Epithelium” at the 21st European congress on alternatives to animal testing.

Lush Prize 2018

cellasys is delighted to be shortlisted for the Lush Prize 2018 in the category science:

shorlist Lush Prize 2018

Analysis software released

The DALiA analytics 1.0 software is available.

DALiA analytics processes data from our microphysiometric systems.

Please see a short demo here:

EpiIntestinal on a Chip at ACTC 2018


Innovative through research

The Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft awards the cachet “INNOVATIVE THROUGH RESEARCH” to cellasys.



Time-resolved monitoring of metabolic activities in vitro (microphysiometry) is necessary to study the dynamic regulations of core biochemical pathways in cellular disease models. Following a brief review of recent developments in the field, this contribution presents the most important branches of current sensor-based methods of microphysiometry. The primary parameters assessed by microphysiometry are extracellular pH changes and the concentration of dissolved oxygen to conclude on extracellular acidification (EAR) and oxygen uptake rates (OUR) as quantitative measures for cell metabolism. Direct sensing of selected small molecule metabolites or metabolic heat are alternative assay strategies. The major physical transduction principles encompass electrochemical and optochemical sensing complemented by less popular approaches for highly specific applications. All microphysiometric devices include tissue culture maintenance systems that have to guarantee physiological conditions and that must be functionally aligned with the sensing component. The interplay of cell metabolic activity and sensors in microscaled reaction volumes can be simulated with appropriate numerical models describing the physical processes of reaction and diffusion. While aspects of automation and throughput belong more to the engineering side of microphysiometry, both form the basis for the inevitable statistical data acquisition and analysis. This paper concludes with a description of two selected applications of microphysiometry, one in toxicology and the other one in clinical cancer research.

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