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Skin-derived hepatic cells to predict drug safety and to combat liver diseases

Live from Knowledge for Growth

Ruani Fernando and Karolien Buyl from research group IVTD present their innovative technology based on human-skin derived hepatic cells, to tackle liver diseases.

IVTD at KfG 2018

During the plenary sessions CEO Edwin Moses from VUB spin-off Ablynx honoured professor Hamers, who discovered the incredible Nanobodies technique.

Below some more photos of the booth and fair:

The 5 Flemish university tech offices participate again this year as TTO Flanders at the Knowledge for Growth biotech fair.

VUB’s In Vitro Toxicology and Dermato-cosmetology (IVTD) research group will showcase their innovative skin-derived hepatic cell technology and some selected applications relevant for clinical biotechnology companies.

Human liver anatomy

The liver relevant cells, hSKP-HPC, are derived from human post-natal skin stem cells and represent a sensitive in vitro model suitable for drug-induced hepatotoxicity screening, in pre-clinical drug development programs. In addition, hSKP-HPC display unique properties, ideal for the modelling of the prominent liver diseases such as non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). In this context, the cells are applicable to both mechanistic investigations and anti-NASH/NAFLD drug discovery. 

The cell technology has been shown to compare favourably against a number of gold-standard hepatic cell models currently used by industry, and is being developed further towards high throughput screening (HTS) compatibility.

IVDT stems cells
Caption: Stems cells isolated from human post-natal skin samples can be differentiated to hepatic cells, using a patented protocol. The resulting cell population express markers of mature hepatocytes including albumin (Alb, green) and represent a sensitive and relevant hepatic cell model for multiple applications within pre-clinical drug discovery programs.

Read moreon VUB Today (EN) - (NL).