The cost and inefficiency of the drug
development process can be eased with the help of organ-on-chip and 3D cell culture technology. A wide range of technology in this arena has been
developed; however, what comprises an 'ideal' 3D culture model has not
been defined and translation has proven difficult.
A new article published in Future Science OA
from Shery Huang
and colleagues at the University of Cambridge (UK) has attempted to
address this issue by determining the ideal qualities of such technology
from the point of view of the end users, the biomedical community.
‘The ideal qualities of microfluidics-based 3-D cell culture models from an end-user standpoint has been investigated by researchers.’
"Although a plethora of microfluidics-based culture models has been
developed, the adaptation of these models to address biologically
focused research questions is sparse," noted the authors.
The group designed a survey to assess acceptance of
microfluidics-based 3D cell culture systems. Their results demonstrated a
positive attitude towards the technology, although a gap remains
between what is desired and what is available. In particular, the
biomedical community required systems balancing complexity,
user-friendliness, physiological relevance and controllability.
"In order to become a widely accepted tool in fundamental bioscience
and pharmaceutical industry, 3D culture models have to find suitable
research questions to address and impart tailored complexity, while
overcoming drawbacks such as poor compatibility, relatively low
throughput, limited functionality and lack of a standardized metric in
cross-system comparison," concluded the authors.
They hope that the survey results can provide insight for entrepreneurs interested in the commercialization of these systems.