In vitro Genome Engineering & Disease Modelling
To complement our established in vivo capabilities, and address an important capability gap for the research community, Phenomics Australia is actively expanding our range of in vitro engineering and disease modelling system to include cell-, organoid- and tissue-based models, as well as 3D bioprinting.
Like our established in vivo capabilities, in vitro genome engineering and disease modelling involves the generation of tailored models which can possess targeted mutations of interest and which can replicate clinical findings. These models are an increasingly valuable tool for health discovery and the early trialling of prospective therapies. Models on offer can be genetically engineered using our established CRISPR technologies, and also spatially engineered using 3D bioprinting to replicate natural physiology.
This platform enables highly complex co-culture interaction studies, including tumour and immune cells, host-pathogen interactions, angiogenesis and cell invasion. Using our Janus G3 robot and our Rastrum bioprinter, cells of interest can be embedded in customised hydrogels (bioinks) of varying composition and stiffness in both 96 and 384 well format. We can currently perform large and small scale compound screening coupled with sophisticated imaging in label-free and fluorescent settings. We have developed a customised analysis pipeline that can measure structure size and viability and importantly, can measure hundreds of unbiased cellular features to cluster structures into groups with like phenotypic signatures. This powerful method can rapidly transform the identification of a large ‘hit list’ into a focused sub-set. We have developed this pipeline for cell lines, PDX-derived patient cells or directly derived patient materials, allowing us to begin to make dissect cellular responses and make therapeutic predictions.
The CRISPR technology enables the production of a number of mutations not previously possible using conventional gene targeting. We can generate knock-out, knock-in, point-mutated and tagged versions of your favourite gene in a wide variety of both human and mouse cell lines. we currently offer use of our proven cell lines (hESC, HEK293, MDA-MB-231, A549, MCF7, KPC, C26, mESC) and we are happy to consider others as projects require.
In addition to the current services on offer, Phenomics Australia is making a significant step towards establishing a broad panel of new in vitro genome engineering and disease modelling services in Australia for the purposes of discovering gene function, modelling disease and therapeutic development. This includes, for example, models using cell lines, iPS cells, cell & tissue cultures, organoids, and “on-a-chip” systems. These will offer an accessible complement to the in vivo capabilities currently provided by Phenomics Australia.