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CN Bio expands service offering to support oncology drug discovery

CN Bio, a leading organ-on-a-chip company that designs and manufactures single- and multi-organ microphysiological systems (MPS), has launched its Oncology Service in response to the global need to improve cancer drug discovery approval rates.

Understanding the relationship between pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics (PK/PD) and efficacy is critical to the successful development of new medicines, but at present this relationship is primarily investigated using animal models – a process that is time-consuming, ethically undesirable and prone to a lack of translation. This contributes to the low success rate of oncology medicines in the clinic. Expanding CN Bio’s portfolio, the Oncology Service provides a unique means to explore these relationships in vitro, offering a new approach to accelerate the development of cancer therapeutics.

Despite the advancement of in vitro models, the ability of existing approaches to mimic the dynamic drug concentrations found in the human body is limited, with none currently able to recreate PK profiles and investigate their effect on cells and tissues. CN Bio’s Oncology Service addresses this gap in research by enabling researchers to create human and animal PK profiles and apply them to 3D tumour models and organoids.

Harnessing novel technology licensed from the Vanderbilt Institute for Integrative Biosystems Research and Education (VIIBRE), led by Professor John Wikswo, the proprietary PhysioMimix PK system exposes 3D tumour models to in vivo-like profiles by periodically changing the drug concentration in the well. This feature is not currently possible in standard in vitro experiments as the concentration is fixed.

Offering significant time and cost savings, the service enables customers to study dose combinations and schedules which previously required large and expensive xenograft studies. In doing so, the new Oncology Service aims to support improved oncology drug discovery success rates and facilitate precision medicine using patient cells.