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Organ-on-a-Chip Network and Emulate Proof of Concept Awards

The UK Organ-on-a-Chip Network and Emulate, Inc. are pleased to offer Network members the opportunity to apply for a Proof of Concept Award to use a brand new core facility at Queen Mary University of London, The QM+Emulate Organs on Chips Centre.

This initiative aims to help academics win new research grants by providing organ-chips, access to the Emulate platform and support from the Centre Scientist. Researchers can apply to use Emulate’s platform technology, The Human Emulation system in a variety of different ways including:

  • To generate preliminary data to support future grant applications
  • To provide a direct contribution for a grant application
  • To provide preliminary data leading to further use of the centre from existing funding

The total initiative, generously supported by Emulate, consists of approximately £100k of funding which is being used to support multiple research projects providing access to £120,000 of state-of-the-art organ-chip technology available at the The Queen Mary-Emulate Organs on Chips Centre.

Emulate’s platform has been adopted by 10 of the top 25 biopharmaceutical companies, by U.S. governmental agencies, and by academic research centres worldwide and provides an exciting opportunity for members of the UK organ-on-a-chip Network to engage with this technology.

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Applications for Proof of Concept projects may develop new chip models or use Emulates current validated organ models which include: Liver, Proximal Tubule Kidney, Lung and Intestine.

Each project will be provided with:

  • 8 Blank Emulate Organ-Chips
  • Dedicated practical support from Centre Scientist
  • Full access to the Organs-on-Chips Centre and associated equipment

Each project PI will be required to pay the Centre access fee of £600 which covers administration, training and some basic consumables for shorter projects. Please note, longer projects, and projects requiring remote working may require additional charging which will be discussed during the planning phase of the project.

Applicants will need to complete a project proposal form detailing the organ model they wish to use/develop, a brief outline of the experiment(s) they wish to conduct and information on how they intend to use the data generated to leverage further research funding. Centre staff are available to support application development and will work with successful applicants to plan their use of the facilities.


This initiative will operate a rolling call, application deadlines are as follows:

  • 15th September 2020 (Closed)
  • 1st March 2021 (Closed)
  • Expected December 2021 (Next call deadline)
  • April 2022

Eligibility: To apply for this proof-of-concept award applicants must be eligible for UKRI funding.

Completed project proposal forms to be returned to by 16.00 on the day of each deadline, applications available below.

Download an application »

Proposals will be reviewed by a panel consisting of members of the network management group and the Emulate Centres joint steering committee.


Round 1 Awardees:

Advancing Human Synovial Joint Chips

Principal investigator: Karina Wright, Keele University
Co-investigators: Sally Roberts, Keele University
Charlotte Hulme, Keele University

Investigating the diagnostic and drug-screening potential of endothelial-tomesenchymal transition during liver fibrosis

Principal investigator: Neil Dufton, Queen Mary University of London
Co-investigators: James Whiteford, Queen Mary University of London

Modelling anti-fungal immunity in the human intestine

Principal investigator: Neil McCarthy, Queen Mary University of London
Co-investigators: Carol Munro, University of Aberdeen
Daniel Pennington, Queen Mary University of London

Production and validation of a bovine lung-on-a-chip to study bovine respiratory diseases

Principal investigator: Mark Chambers University of Surrey
Co-investigators: Diane Lee, University of Surrey
Geoff Smith, North Carolina State University
Ronald Baynes, North Carolina State University


Round 2 Awardees:

Investigating the role of tumour associated myeloid cells on malignant cell invasion in a metastatic high-grade serous ovarian cancer-on-chip model

Principal investigator: Prof Fran BalkwillQueen Mary University of London
Co-investigators: Dr Mina Mincheva, Queen Mary University of London