search.noResults

search.searching

dataCollection.invalidEmail
note.createNoteMessage

search.noResults

search.searching

orderForm.title

orderForm.productCode
orderForm.description
orderForm.quantity
orderForm.itemPrice
orderForm.price
orderForm.totalPrice
orderForm.deliveryDetails.billingAddress
orderForm.deliveryDetails.deliveryAddress
orderForm.noItems
BIOTECHNOLOGY


STEM CELL-DERIVED KIDNEY-ON-A-CHIP S


cientists from the Hubrecht Institute, the University of Utrecht and Mimetas have successfully grown kidney tubules derived from human kidney adult stem cells in microfluidic chips. Henriette Lanz, director of biology


at Mimetas and co-author of the paper explains: “Scientists at the Hubrecht Institute managed to reprogramme stem cells found


in the human kidney cortex to cells that are similar to tubular cells of the kidney. From these cells, my team has grown three- dimensional perfused kidney tubules. We have discovered that these tubules are fully polarised, meaning that they distinguish inside from outside, just like in a real kidney. Moreover, the biologically important barrier function of the kidney tubes is intact. We show that transporter activity is functional, which is a hallmark of kidney tissue, responsible for pumping of nutrients and toxicants across the kidney barrier. We can grow 40 of such tubules in one single OrganoPlate. The kidney tubes can be used to create disease models that allow the development of novel therapies. This novel technology offers


NEW APPROACH TO SEPSIS THERAPY S


mall infections can be fatal: millions of people die each year from sepsis, an overreaction of the immune system. A new immune signalling molecule, designed by a research team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM), now provides the basis for potential new approaches in sepsis therapy. Researchers around the world have long been searching for new therapies. An interdisciplinary team from the fields of structural biology, immunology and cell biology has now, for the first time, successfully produced a protein that could balance the overshooting immune response. In their work, the scientists were inspired


by evolution: mice are well protected from sepsis by their immune systems. Here, interleukins – messengers that mediate communication between the cells of the immune system – play a key role. “The interleukins are the vocabulary with which immune cells communicate,” explains Matthias Feige, professor of Cellular Protein Biochemistry at the TUM. The cells form these messenger molecules according to a very specific blueprint of individual amino


acids. Their arrangement determines which three- dimensional structure an interleukin adopts and, consequently, which information it transmits. Humans and mice


have similar, yet different vocabularies. The researchers discovered one striking difference in interleukin-27-alpha. This molecule can be released by cells of the mouse immune system but not by human cells and regulates immune cell function. “Using computer models and cell


biological experiments, we discovered that a single structurally important amino acid defines whether interleukin-27-alpha is released by cells of the immune system,” explains Stephanie Müller, the first author of the study. “That gave us an idea about how we can engineer novel human interleukin proteins that are released by cells so that we can produce them biotechnologically.”


a powerful human alternative to animal testing for toxic side effects of new medicines.” A mini kidney from the lab doesn’t look


like a normal kidney, but the simple cell structures share many of the characteristics of real kidneys. Researchers can use them to study certain kidney diseases. “We can use these mini kidneys to model various disorders: hereditary kidney diseases, infections and cancer. This allows us to study in detail what exactly is going wrong,” says Hans Clevers, professor of Molecular Genetics at Utrecht University and the University Medical Center Utrecht, and group leader at the Hubrecht Institute. “This helps us to understand the workings of healthy kidneys better, and hopefully, in the future, we will be able to develop treatments for kidney disorders.”


For more information visit www.mimetas.com


The team then prepared the modified interleukin in the lab and tested its biological functions – with very encouraging results: the engineered messenger molecule is recognised by human cells. First analyses suggest that it can indeed balance an overreaction of the immune system, making it a promising candidate for sepsis therapy.


For more information visit www.tum.de


www.scientistlive.com 45


Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64  |  Page 65  |  Page 66  |  Page 67  |  Page 68  |  Page 69  |  Page 70  |  Page 71  |  Page 72