On-chip spermatogenesis

On-chip spermatogenesis

                In the medical and pharmaceutical fields, study of organs and screening of drugs have conventionally been performed either in-vivo or using unsatisfactory in-vitro models consisting on 2D layers or 3D aggregates of cells coming from immortalized cell lines. Organ-on-chips are revolutionizing such studies by allowing the creation of organ-like platforms providing more physiologically relevant results, with the creation of new organs in a bottom-up approach or by improving the culture conditions for ex-vivo tissues.

We propose to create a platform for the in-vitro spermatogenesis, allowing the culture of pieces of ex-vivo testis tissues, in a miniaturized environment to eventually achieve and study continuous spermatogenesis during an extended period of time.

In this project, the student will design and fabricate a microfluidic system supporting the long-term culture of human or non-human primate testis tissues [1,2], with an access to the tubular lumen to monitor spermatogenesis in real-time during the culture. This work will be performed in collaboration with the Centre of Reproductive Medicine and Andrology in Münster (DE).

Techniques: microfluidic design, microfabrication, microfluidic manipulation, cell culture, tissue culture, cell analysis.


[1] Komeya, M., Kimura, H., Nakamura, H., Yokonishi, T., Sato, T., Kojima, K., Hayashi, K., Katagiri, K., Yamanaka, H., Sanjo, H., Yao, M., Kamimura, S., Inoue, K., Ogonuki, N., Ogura, A., Fujii, T., Ogawa, T., 2016. Long-term ex vivo maintenance of testis tissues producing fertile sperm in a microfluidic device. Scientific reports 6, 21472. https://doi.org/10.1038/srep21472

[2] Yamada, A., Renault, R., Chikina, A., Venzac, B., Pereiro, I., Coscoy, S., Verhulsel, M., Parrini, M.C., Villard, C., Viovy, J.-L., Descroix, S., 2016. Transient microfluidic compartmentalization using actionable microfilaments for biochemical assays, cell culture and organs-on-chip. Lab Chip 16, 4691–4701. https://doi.org/10.1039/C6LC01143H

prof.dr.ir. S. le Gac (Severine) PhD
Full Professor