Human organs which are produced on chip that you probably didn’t know

There are many things you might imagine being  put on a chip. But what are the chances of finding living, breathing human organs in  one of them? Organ on-chips is becoming a hot topic in biotechnology these days. These chips will have a closer resemblance to computer components than human body parts as researchers are focusing on models for a whole range of organs, including the liver, the lung, and even the female reproductive system.The chips were first developed for evaluating the effectiveness of drugs but have come to be seen as a potentially useful technology in our efforts to ensure the safety of the foods and cosmetics we regulate.They can be put to work to see how the body processes an ingredient in a dietary supplement or a chemical in a cosmetic and how a toxin or combination of toxins affects cells, information that ultimately can be used to help assess risks to human health.

So here are 6 organs that have been already inserted in a chip:

1. Brain Chips in Space

A startup company Emulate recently announced its plans to send its Brain-Chips to the International Space Station, where they may help to study how the brain functions in space, including the blood-brain barrier and how stressors and inflammation affect brain function.

This Brain-Chip contains both neurons and vascular endothelial cells, and is made to model both brain physiology and the blood-brain barrier. They say that they are not trying to entirely recreate a brain but just the smallest functional unit of the organ.The chip has blood-brain barrier, composed of microvascular endothelial cells, neurons, astrocytes, and pericytes which interact in a very specific manner and need to be organized in a very specific way.

2. Mini heart

Researchers have created a small eraser-size devices which contains live, beating heart cells.For creating these devices, researchers first take skin cells from patients and reprogram them into stem cells that later develop into cardiac myocytes. They then place these cells on chips containing bioengineered surfaces that recreate the heart’s natural environment.

McCain who specializes on heart chips had used it as model for Barth syndrome Now. her team is focused on using these devices to study other diseases. Using model organism like rat may be helpful but it does not have the same genetic makeup as we do. So once we have disease models it will make a huge impact specially on inherited diseases.

3.Imitating Menstruation

Teresa Woodruff, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern University, and colleagues have linked five miniature organs together in a hand-size chip to model the female reproductive tract.

This chip is called EVATAR, is a series of tubes and pumps that carry a blue, blood-like fluid through cells containing five mini organs—a fallopian tube, a uterus, a vagina, an ovary, and a liver. This system allows us to do is move media in a way that brings in fresh nutrients and eliminates waste. By adding hormones to the circulating liquid, the team was able to mimic the 28-day menstrual cycle.

Scientists hope that  EVATAR will help to explain more about reproductive physiology and disease, as well as in drug testing and development. Now they are making n a male version of the chip, ADATAR.

4.Lungs

One of the first organ to be on a chip was lungs. It is a clear, thumb drive-size device with two channels: an air-filled upper channel lined with human alveolar epithelial cells, and a lower channel lined with blood vessel cells and a white blood cell-containing solution flowing through. To make a more close resemblace, the researchers also mimicked breathing motion by applying a vacuum to deform the hollow tubes lining the main channels. This one lung alveolus chip provided proof-of-principle for modeling normal organ-level physiology and disease, discovering new insights into the importance of physical forces, finding new therapeutic targets and even a new drug.

5.Building Barriers

A group of biomedical engineers have created a chip to study the brain and the blood-brain-barrier. Their main focus is on human neurovascular unit (NVU) because of its importance in the interactions between cortical neurons and the blood-brain barrier (BBB) that protects them, hence the term neurovascular unit.

The NVU chip consists of a tiny cavity divided by a porous membrane separating one chamber, which represents the brain, from another chamber, which represents the surrounding vasculature. It contains cortical neurons, microvascular endothelial cells, astrocytes, and pericytes from humans.

The team has used  NVU chip in a variety of applications, such as investigating disease states and to study the effects of inflammation. Currently, they also have  initiated  a program to use this technology to test drugs for the pharmaceutical industry.

6.Eye

Researchers have created an eye-on-a-chip with an eyelid that blinks. This chip is in shape of a contact lens, approximates the ocular surface of the eye. It contains human cells from the cornea and conjunctiva . They also engineered an eyelid, that attaches to the surface and allows the eye to blink, keeping the surface of the chip lubricated. They  plan to use this chip to model other eye conditions, like  drug testing and development, and to test and optimize contact lenses. They are currently developing a retina-on-a-chip.


To check how organ on chip works : fda

Leave a Reply

Related Articles

10 ways how 3D printing is transforming the biotech industry A woman living on a dialysis machine is grown a new kidney using her own cells!  An old man struggling with age-related vision loss has his eyesight r...
50 interesting facts about Biotechnology Given the multitude of emerging technologies, especially advancements in DNA synthesis, it's impossible to ignore how important bioindustries will be ...
A paralyzed woman successfully controlled a tablet with her brain waves In mid 2015 a news surfaced....that actually shook the neuroscience world.One patient with paralysis got the chance to move from 80's DOS to modern da...
Artifical womb: Is it the end of natural pregnancy? Do you get turned off by the whole pregnancy thing but you still want to have babies ? An artificial womb  might just be your answer. The big question...
Designer Babies – How one can design a baby before giving birth A designer baby is a baby who has been artificially made using in-vitro fertilisation. The term "designer baby" was taken from "Designer clothing" whi...
Ever wondered how the Beer is brewed? Here is the science behind it! There's an ancient battle raging everyday in breweries around the world.  The battle is to protect your beer from dastardly bacteria that want to inva...
Here is what you need to know about Head Transplantation Now you will be able to see the first ever human head transplant. As one may recall, a controversial surgeon Sergio Canavero has promised to perform t...