New In Vitro 3D Functional Model of Tumorigenesis

Period of Performance: 09/01/2006 - 08/31/2007


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Vivo Biosciences, Inc.
Birmingham, AL 35205
Principal Investigator

Research Topics


DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): In our initial R&D effort we successfully demonstrated the feasibility of a novel human biomatrix system (HuBiogel) in designing 3D bioassay system for in vitro examination of tumorigenesis process. The overall goal was and is to develop and commercialize these human bioassay systems. Phase I work definitely established that new assay models exhibit many advantages over conventional monolayer cell cultures and animal-derived biomatrix systems. HuBiogel assays of defined bioactivity or environment are established for real-time analysis of tumor growth and angiogenesis. Based on project's clinical relevance, we also initiated active collaborations with two renowned cancer researchers. With this promising technology, we propose three extended tasks to fully accomplish our R&D goals. They are: 1) Establish efficient protocols for biomatrix production, analysis and formulation at commercial scale using automated technologies; 2) Complete the development of 3D tumor growth, invasion and angiogenesis assay platform using human breast and brain tumor cell models; 3) Validate functional properties of HuBiogel assays by established cellular and molecular analysis techniques. Our integrated technology will allow precise real-time analysis of tumorigenesis cascade. New 3D assay technology will provide more clinical relevance as it emulates human tumor-like biology and function. This advanced bioassay system will be useful for endpoint analysis of early to late tumorigenesis stages, parallel evaluation of specific positive and negative regulators and phenotypic profiling of tumor cells or biopsies. Thus, the timely completion of this promising R&D project will positively impact cancer biology, drug discovery and therapeutic research markets. Project Relevance: No acceptable commercial tumor assay model currently exists which utilizes a natural or defined human biomatrix system. VBI will develop reusable and disposable 3D tumor growth, invasion and angiogenesis assay platforms. Sale of HuBiogel, pre-packed assay kits and in-house drug testing services would have a significant world-wide market in basic, biomedical and cancer research fields.