New Developments

Liver sinusoid iPSC derived model

The liver sinusoid is one of the main functional structures of liver composed of specialised cells organised to form blood vessels that make up the microcirculation of the liver. There are about one billion sinusoids in human liver.

Newcells Biotech is developing a model of liver sinusoid derived from human iPSC cells and in 2019, was awarded a contract under the NC3R Challenge programme to develop a model of the liver sinusoid suitable as a model for testing the safety of Yellow Fever vaccine.

Using iPSCs we have demonstrated the ability to build a membrane support model containing fenestrated endothelium, Kupffer and stellate cells, and hepatocytes. Our development programme is confirming the functionality of the model and demonstrating the ability to support viral infection and viremia.

Further work will look at the ability of the model to support other viral infections, as an accurate assay for hepatotoxicity and disease modelling.


Upper airway iPSC derived model

The conducting airways of the lungs are constantly exposed to the damaging effects of pollutants, gasses and nanoparticles (NM) present in the atmosphere. Various chemical compounds used as medication can also have an adverse effect on the respiratory system. It is of interest to understand and model those interactions as part of risk assessment evaluations in the process of drug discovery.

Newcells Biotech has developed a proprietary technology to isolate iPSC derived basal-like cells of high purity from a mixed population of lung progenitors. When differentiated on an air-liquid interface, they form tight junctions and a structured pseudostratified epithelium, analogous to in vivo airway. We have confirmed the presence of functional basal cells, goblet cells, club cells and ciliated cells by immunohistochemistry and an apical mucus layer with beating cilia with bright field microscopy.

We are now optimising the production of this model and validating the response of the assay to a range of known toxins.