Introducing our 3D Neurotoxicity Assay

Cyprotex are happy to introduce the 3D Neurotoxicity Assay as part of our toxicology service offerings. Using an in vitro 3D brain microtissue model, the assay detects neurotoxicity of novel therapeutics with better recapitulation of the complex in vivo microenvironment than traditional 2D models.

The prevalence of adverse neurotoxic reactions of the brain in response to drugs or environmental hazards continues to prompt the development of novel cell-based assays to better determine neurotoxic risk. In line with current ethical concerns and the 3 R’s, Cyprotex are constantly developing new approaches to identify novel ways in which in vitro methods can be used to more accurately predict neurotoxicity in humans, thus reducing the need for lengthy in vivo animal studies and preclinical toxicology studies. As such, the 3D neurotoxicity assay has been introduced to meet this demand.

In vitro screening assists with prioritization of resources needed for further testing, and is useful for the rapid screening of large numbers of chemicals for their toxicological potential. The 3D neurotoxicity assay reports data across several end points including microtissue health, DNA structure, calcium homeostasis, mitochondrial mass, mitochondrial membrane potential and cellular ATP content. It has been shown that both mitochondrial dysfunction and calcium homeostasis are frequently observed responses to toxic compounds and, as such, are implicated in neurotoxicity. Confocal high content imaging (HCI) is a sensitive technique that allows the simultaneous detection of multiple cell health parameters within a 3D microtissue structure in combination with a measure of cellular ATP content.

Our in vitro 3D brain microtissue model offers improved longevity and better recapitulation of in vivo cellular physiology when compared to 2D systems. In combination with an automated multiparametric HCI and a cytotoxicity assay, this presents a viable screening strategy for the accurate in vivo relevant detection of novel therapeutics with neurotoxicity potential early in drug development.

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