SMART-Tumour-on-Chip awarded by NWO for Séverine Le Gac

The Dutch Research Council NWO is awarding over 9.4 million euros to nine innovative research projects on emerging key technologies. These are technologies that show promise in academia and also have great potential for application. Organ-on-Chip researcher Séverine Le Gac (AMBER, EEMCS faculty) was awarded her project to further develop a Tumour-on-Chip platform that will be able to correlate tissue microenvironment and therapeutic outcomes.

Project: SMART-ToC Tumor-on-Chip (ToC) platform incorporating Sensing hydrogel MAtrices – correlating microenvironment and Response to immunotherapy
UT professor:  Prof. Dr. ir. Séverine Le Gac
Co-applicants: Saxion University of Applied Sciences, Radboud UMC
Co-funders: Procall, Ibidi GmbH, Synaffix, Stichting Proefdiervrij
Collaboration partners: Patient Advisory Board Women's Cancer - Radboud UMC, Department of Medical Oncology - Radboud UMC, Faculty of Science and Medicine - Universität Freiburg, Institute for human Organ and Disease Model Technologies (hDMT), TNO

Summary of the project

SMART-ToC will develop an advanced breast cancer model in a miniaturized on-chip format for testing (immuno)therapies, while pursuing an animal-free experimental approach. Our model will accurately reproduce and measure important environmental factors of native tumours that are lacking in current therapy-testing approaches while significantly impacting treatment outcomes. Our model comprises a three-dimensional multi-cellular culture in innovative tailorable and sensing scaffolds, that allow correlating microenvironment and therapeutic outcomes. We will conduct in parallel an innovation trajectory towards societal acceptance. Our trans-disciplinary team, including experts and various stakeholders, will streamline therapy development, aid developing patient-specific treatments and benefit industrial productivity and society.

Key enabling technologies at NWO

The exploratory research has been awarded within the Emerging Key Enabling Technologies (KIC) call. This call provides space for pioneering PPP research around emerging key enabling technologies, focused on exploration and development of innovative ideas.