Sue Gibbs and Albert Feilzer, together with Elga de Vries and Vivi Heine (Amsterdam UMC) have been awarded with a TTW grant from NWO (850.000 Euro) to generate a multi-organ platform called Body Barriers. Here they will study if and how potentially neurotoxic substances from medical oral devices breach the neuroprotective blood-brain barrier to reach the brain and induce inflammatory and neurodegenerative effects, leading to cognitive decline. In this project, organ-on-chip technology will be used to create a vascularized multi-organ platform that will mimic the barriers between the mouth and the brain and will incorporate stem cell derived brain organoids.
Body Barriers will be the first clinically relevant testing platform for the neurotoxic effects of substances leaching from dental medical devices. Therefore, this project will provide an essential tool for developing safer medical devices and for neurodegenerative disease research.