Product News: BellBrook Labs Merges 3D Cell Culture and HCS with iuvo™ Microconduit Array Plates at MipTec 2010

15 Sep 2010

Visit Bellbrook to learn about the recently introduced iuvo™ Microconduit Array plates. These plates are moving cellular assays towards highly miniaturized 3D cell models and automated image-based detection that more accurately reflects in vivo biology. Instead of the "buckets" of various sizes used for cell culture in multiwell plates, iuvo plates have microchannels with geometries designed specifically to support the biology and/or functions of interest.

The company is now offering two iuvo products, the Chemotaxis Assay Plate for quantitative measurement of neutrophil chemotaxis in a defined gradient, and the Microchannel Array 5250 plate for diverse 3D-cell culture applications and a compound profiling services for information rich, 3D tumor cell invasion assays.

The design of the Chemotaxis Assay plate allows delivery of cells at the trailing edge of a concentration gradient of chemoattractant, which forms spontaneously and is sustained for several hours. The progress of neutrophils migrating horizontally into the gradient region can be monitored with common microscopic imaging instrumentation used for high content analysis. Improvements over existing methods include cell migration in a defined, stable gradient of chemoattractant, a more automation-friendly assay format, and a 10-fold reduction in cell usage.

The Microchannel 5250 plates can be prefilled with cells suspended in collagen to allow fully automated microscopic imaging of cell behavior, including migration, in 3D ECM. The channels are designed for post-assay immuno-staining, which dramatically increases the information content of the assays. Furthermore, the submicroliter volume of the channels allows the use of primary cells for screening applications. BellBrook’s 3D invasion assay service combines Microchannel 5250 plates with automated high content analysis to produce images of tumor cells actively invading the extracellular matrix. The company can provide customers with quantitative measurements of the anti-invasive properties of their compounds based on true 3D cell migration with sufficient throughput for profiling hundreds of compounds.

In one of the first independent validations of the iuvo platform, a team led by Andreas Friedl at the University of Wisconsin-Madison 3D showed that their 3D co-culture model for breast cancer was fully functional in the Microchannel 5250 plates, including recapitulation of paracrine signaling between stromal and epithelial cells and disruption of growth signals by known inhibitors. The study, etitled “3D microchannel co-culture: method and biological validation,” raises the possibility of using 3D cell culture in an automated high throughput screening mode for drug discovery and drug sensitivity testing in individual patients.

Visit booth G24 for more information.