Organs-on-Chips and other predictive in vitro models are tiny bioengineered systems containing living cells that recreate the microenvironment experienced by cells within the human body. As miniaturised living systems with human cells, Organs-on-Chips can predict human response with greater precision and detail than today’s cell culture or animal-based testing, and can be used in a laboratory to test drugs and understand how the body works.
The ultimate success of predictive in vitro models in areas such as drug development and personalised medicine will require engagement of all stake holders from scientists, engineers, clinicans, pharmaceutical companies, and the regulatory authorities as well as the general public.
At the Centre for Predictive in vitro Models we therefore recognise the importance of communication and engagement with the wider public. We welcome the opportunity to interact with journalists and media outlets (see press releases and news items) and are actively involved in public engagement activities around the importance and challenges of organ-on-a-chip technology and other predictive in vitro models. These include a recent hugely successful 'Organ-on-a-chip shop' at the Science Museum Lates event at which visitors learnt about the cells, mechanical forces and 3D environments that need to be incorporated into different organ-chip and created their own model of a chip on a 'shrinky-dink' keyring.