Unlock the Power of 3D with InSphero
Meet InSphero at SLAS2020, the annual meeting of the Society of Laboratory Automation & Screening, where science research and development professionals gather to learn about the latest and greatest laboratory tools and technologies available and how they are being applied by their peers. This year, our team will be teaching short courses, leading tutorials, and giving scientific presentations to show you how you can unlock the power of 3D cell technologies with InSphero 3D InSight™ Discovery and Safety Platforms, powered by Akura™ technology. We’ll also be at Booth #1641, ready to answer your questions about our:
- Versatile research platforms for metabolic diseases (e.g., Diabetes and NASH), oncology, and liver toxicology
- 3D InSight™ human tissue models precisely engineered to increase efficiency in drug discovery and safety testing, available assay-ready or as the foundation of a contract services program or research partnership
- Scalable Akura™ technology, engineered specifically for use with 3D InSight™ human tissue models, including 96- and 384- well formats as well as our unrivaled 80-well microphysiological organ-on-a-chip system
Akura™ Flow: the Inside Story
In SLAS Technology: Translating Life Sciences Innovation, read the story of how our Akura™ Technology team collaborated with Prof. Andreas Hierlemann’s bioengineering lab at ETH Zurich to develop and test early prototypes of what would become our Akura Flow™ microphysiological system. Designed for body-on-a-chip applications, such as low clearance assays and metabolic disease modeling using multiple types of 3D InSight™ microtissues, this technology was a top finalist for the prestigious SLAS Innovation Award and enables researchers to:
- Minimize cell, medium and compound use in a miniaturized 10-microtissue configuration
- Leverage maximum physiological complexity while minimizing operational complexity
- Compare numerous conditions in parallel on one plate in a scalable, automation-compatible platform
- Employ a diverse array of experimental endpoints
3D Cell-Based assays for Drug De-risking
Cell-based in vitro assays are used throughout the drug discovery and development chain, allowing for high throughput efficacy but also mechanistic-based toxicity testing. A big challenge however is the translation of in vitro assays towards the in vivo outcome. Physiological relevance is a key parameter to improve the predictive power of cell-based assays. The better we can reflect tissue architecture, composition and function the more predictive an in vitro assay will become. The 3D course covers advances in 3D cell culature technologies, assays and their use in drug discovery and development. Course instructors include InSphero Head of Technology and Platforms, Dr. Olivier Frey and InSphero CEO Dr. Jan Lichtenberg.
Why the Akura™ Technology Platform Enables a Seamless Link from Screening in 3D to Organ-on-a-Chip
The future of drug discovery and development lies in 3D human tissue models. The latest generation of 3D in vitro models are highly predictive, stable over long periods of time (thus appropriate for assessing complex treatment regimens), and permit the cultivation of organotypic tissues, composed of all the relevant cell types required to recapitulate human in vivo physiology. They allow to recapitulate complex diseases such as NAFLD/NASH/fibrosis in the liver field, Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes in pancreatic research or the heterogeneity in oncology using PDX models. Fully exploiting complex biology requires precisely engineered culturing platform not only supporting tissue function, but building a seamless interface to operation and analysis. In this tutorial, we will present our scalable 3D microtissue models together with our specifically engineered, ANSI/SLAS-compatible plates such as 96-well, 384-well and organ-on-a-chip formats. All are highly compatible with state-of-the-art imaging and automation equipment as well as most assay endpoints. Our unique technology platform enables researchers to complement and reduce reliance on animal experiments, saving significant time and resources in the drug development process and giving ensuring higher confidence in decision making for later clinical stages.
In the tutorial, we will focus on the reliability of handling of 3D microtissues in robust assay setups and how to achieve model and parameter continuity across different plate technologies. Tutorial led by InSphero Head of Technology and Platforms Dr. Olivier Frey and CEO Dr. Jan Lichtenberg. Guest speaker: Mahomi Suzuki, Yokogawa Electric Corporation
Automation and High-Throughput Technologies
We present a fully automated method to transfer 3D microtissues of different organ types into a microphysiological culturing device with the aims to interconnect several organ models through microfluidic technology and to investigate the effects of compounds in a more systemic, in vivo-like fashion at large scale.
Presented by Dr. Olivier Frey, InSphero Head of Technology and Platforms
Data Analysis and Informatics
A Framework for Optimizing High Content Imaging of 3D Models for Drug Discovery.
3D spheroid models are rapidly gaining favor for drug discovery applications due to their improved morphological characteristics, cellular complexity, and long lifespan in culture, and higher physiological relevance relative to 2D cell culture models. Here, we discuss a framework for high content imaging and analysis of 3D models for drug discovery based on the versatile 3D InSight™ platform, which combines scaffold-free 3D microtissue models with scalable, automation-compatible Akura™ technology, currently available in 96- and 384-well plates as well as an 80-well microphysiological system (MPS) for organ-on-a-chip applications. Akura™ plates have a unique well geometry and ultra-low attachment surface specifically engineered for 3D microtissue handling and feature a flat, 25μm-thick and optically pure well bottom ideal for image-based interrogation of 3D models. 3D InSight™ liver, islet and tumor microtissue models are derived from primary human donor tissues and available ready to assay, enabling researchers to move freely between a high-throughput screening format to more complex, lower throughput MPS organ network. The platform enables fully automated, loss-free processing, as well as deeper, higher resolution imaging of spheroids than previously possible using automated high content instruments. We used this platform to investigate real-time immune cell interactions in a multicellular 3D tumor model. These proof-of-concept studies demonstrate the potential for high resolution image-based analysis of 3D spheroid models for drug discovery applications and confirm that cell and temporal-spatial analyses that fully exploit multicellular features of spheroid models is not only possible but soon will be routine practice in drug discovery workflows. Presented by Frauke Grave, InSphero Akura™ Product Manager and Mahomi Suzuki of Yokogawa Electric Corporation
Emerging Technology Poster
Akura™ Flow Scalable Organ-on-a-Chip Platform
The next step towards more biomimetic and systemic in vitro models is the design of multi-organ networks, which allow communication of different tissue types. InSphero’s scalable organ-on-a-chip platform features microfluidic channels and chambers that were specifically engineered for culturing of microtissue spheroids under physiological flow conditions. Produced completely out of polystyrene, the Akura™ Flow system has a familiar plate format, and complies with SBS-standard dimensions for automation. The concept allows on-demand interconnection of up to 10 same or different microtissues per channel in a very flexible way. With the broad range of available spheroid-based organ-models, near unlimited preclinical testing applications can be generated using the same platform.
Emerging Technology Poster
Akura™ Scalable Plate Technology
3D InSight™ Microtissues are delivered to labs throughout the United States, Europe, and Japan in Akura™ 96 or Akura™ 384 microtissue delivery plates, which are engineered to ensure safe transport, efficient handling, and reliable assessment of our 3D model systems. Unlike conventional assay plates, our patented Akura™ Technology microtissue delivery formats include non-adherent coating and unique features to simplify microtissue handling, and enable seamless integration of our advanced 3D models into your cell-based assay workflow.