News from NOCI
The Netherlands Organ-on-Chip Initiative (NOCI) funded by the NWO/OCW Gravity programme is now 2 years underway, almost halfway towards its midterm evaluation. More than 21 PhD students and 5 postdocs have been recruited over the 6 participating universities and institutes and the first joint publications are beginning to appear.
Aside from the annual "Troppe breve" retreats, training courses for all NOCI researchers have taken place in the University of Twente to manufacture "chips," Leiden University Medical Centre to culture and differentiate stem cell, and at University Medical Centre Groningen to learn about single-cell RNA sequencing. The PhD students organize their own retreats to present their projects to each other and to exchange technical "tips and tricks" on how to get the best out of their particular OoC system. The retreats show that having fun in science is as good a facilitator of collaboration as having supervisors that interact at the steering committee meetings.
NOCI researchers all take part in hDMT symposia and annual meetings and hDMT managing director Janny van den Eijnden - van Raaij is a member of the scientific advisory board of NOCI together with Phillippe Renaud of EPFL and Peter Loskill of the Fraunhofer Institute, also coordinator of the EU ITN programme EUROoC in which several NOCI researchers and PIs take part. NOCI researchers also have attended all of the European Organ-on-Chip meetings which for the last two years have been combined in a single conference of the newly founded European Organ-on-Chip Society (EUROoCS).
As NOCI moves forward into its next phase, NOCI and hDMT activities will continue to be intertwined to strengthen the OoC network in the Netherlands, integrate OoC and biotech companies with academic research groups and as importantly, ensure that the right groups "find" each other in new initiatives and grant proposals.
M.N. S. de Graaf, A.Cochrane, F.E. van den Hil, W. Buijsman, A.D. van der Meer, A. van den Berg, C. L. Mummery and V. V. Orlova Scalable microphysiological system to model three-dimensional blood vessels APL Bioengineering 3, 026105 (2019); https://doi.org/10.1063/1.5090986
Van Meer B, Krotenberg Garcia A, Sala L, Davis RP, Eschenhagen T, Denniong C, Tertoolen LGJ, Mummery CL., Simultaneous measurement of excitation-contraction coupling parameters identifies mechanisms underlying contractile responses of hiPSC-derived cardiomyocytes, Nature Communications (2019) https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-019-12354-8
Renée Moerkens, Joram Mooiweer, Sebo Withoff, and Cisca Wijmenga; Celiac disease-on-chip: Modeling a multifactorial disease in vitro; United European Gastroenterology Journal 2019, Vol. 7(4) 467-476; doi: 10.1177/2050640619836057
Danielle Cardoso-Silva, Deborah Delbue, Alice Itzlinger, Renée Moerkens, Sebo Withoff, Federica Branchi and Michael Schumann; Intestinal Barrier Function in Gluten-Related Disorders; Nutrients 2019, 11, 2325; doi:10.3390/nu11102325