Sensor Integrated Biosensors (SIBs)

Lead Research Organisation: University of Nottingham
Department Name: Sch of Pharmacy

Abstract

We propose to develop sensor integrated bioreactors (SIBs) as a tool enabling researchers and producers of tissue
constucts to monitor their development non-destructively during long-term culture (up to 28 days). The innovation in this
proposal is the incorporation of advanced sensing, imaging and monitoring technologies into an existing state-of-the-art
bioreactor system: Quasi-Vivo. The added functionality will allow for non-invasive, in situ monitoring of tissue constructs
which will avoid the need to sacrifice experiments to collect data at each time point. The SIBs will be exploited by the enduser
group established in this consortium, both to speed the development cycle of regenerative medicine products and
improve the economics of production by providing a more closely controlled in-vitro model than is currently available.
This project will deliver cell culture systems that provide faster growth of tissue, more accurate control of phenotype and
improved efficiency through the ability to monitor tissue development non-destructively in a flow-through system. The
system will be validated in a particular application for bone regeneration using RegenTec's ' injectable bone' scaffold.
However the Quasi-Vivo bioreactors incorporating the Sensor Integrated Bioreactors (SIBs) technology developed in this
project will have a wider range of application than just bone regeneration. The initial size of the bioreactor will be ideal for
research applications but it has already been demonstrated that up to 36 Quasi-Vivo bioreactors can be operated in parallel
making them inherently scaleable for stem cell propagation for clinical use.

Technical Summary

We propose to develop sensor integrated bioreactors (SIBs) as a tool enabling researchers and producers of tissue
constucts to monitor their development non-destructively during long-term culture (up to 28 days). The innovation in this
proposal is the incorporation of advanced sensing, imaging and monitoring technologies into an existing state-of-the-art
bioreactor system: Quasi-Vivo. The added functionality will allow for non-invasive, in situ monitoring of tissue constructs
which will avoid the need to sacrifice experiments to collect data at each time point. The SIBs will be exploited by the enduser
group established in this consortium, both to speed the development cycle of regenerative medicine products and
improve the economics of production by providing a more closely controlled in-vitro model than is currently available.
This project will deliver cell culture systems that provide faster growth of tissue, more accurate control of phenotype and
improved efficiency through the ability to monitor tissue development non-destructively in a flow-through system. The
system will be validated in a particular application for bone regeneration using RegenTec's ' injectable bone' scaffold.
However the Quasi-Vivo bioreactors incorporating the Sensor Integrated Bioreactors (SIBs) technology developed in this
project will have a wider range of application than just bone regeneration. The initial size of the bioreactor will be ideal for
research applications but it has already been demonstrated that up to 36 Quasi-Vivo bioreactors can be operated in parallel
making them inherently scaleable for stem cell propagation for clinical use.

Planned Impact

The beneficiaries of this industry-led research project will ultimately be the general public and UK plc.
The 2 SMEs in the consortium will use the research undertaken to establish and enhance their market positions. Kirkstall
will be able to enhance its product range by including the developed SIBs modules, while RegenTec will be able to use the
SIBs prototypes to better understand their tissue construct's growth and gain an invaluable QA tool. In the longer term the
SIBs modules can be operated in parallel making them inherently scaleable for stem cell propagation for clinical use.
The larger companies that are involved in an advisory capacity in this consortium would also be beneficiaries of this
research as they will have access to the new demonstrator technology and have input as to which priority applications the
demonstrator should be developed for.
The general public will benefit from the research as the greater understanding of regenerative medicine based technologies
and improved quality control will accelerate the translation of regenerative medicine products from bench to bedside.

Publications

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publication icon
Harrington H (2013) Self-reporting scaffolds for 3-dimensional cell culture. in Journal of visualized experiments : JoVE

 
Description Sensors have been developed that can be incorporated into bioreactors developed and sold by Kirkstall Ltd.
Exploitation Route The sensing technologies developed are being incorporated into products being developed by Kirkstall Ltd.
Sectors Manufacturing, including Industrial Biotechology,Pharmaceuticals and Medical Biotechnology

 
Description Findings from this project have been used to expand the product line of Kirkstall Ltd and to increase the headcount of employees at both Kirkstall Ltd and Locate Therapeutics (formerly RegenTec).
First Year Of Impact 2013
Sector Manufacturing, including Industrial Biotechology,Pharmaceuticals and Medical Biotechnology
Impact Types Economic