► What’s the story of your company and how does it stand out?
Aracari Biosciences was founded by key pioneers of 3D micro physiological systems. The founders are professors at the University of California, in Irvine and Davis.
Between them, they hold dozens of U.S.-issued patents, launched many successful biotech companies, and have published hundreds of peer-reviewed publications.
► What is the name of your proprietary technology or service?
Aracari tests drug candidates in its patented Vascularized Micro-Organ (VMO™) and Vascularized Micro-Tumor (VMT™) devices (Figure 1), which deliver drugs, nutrients and blood cells naturally through human, fully-perfused vascular networks to 3D tissues embedded in a natural matrix. These devices faithfully recreate the way molecules and immune cells are delivered in vivo.
► How is your technology different from other 3D cell culture technologies?
Other 3D models do not transport oxygen and nutrients through naturally forming blood vessels. Aracari’s devices therefore provide a much more accurate platform for investigating the impact of drug candidates on human organs and tumors in a highly reproducible and scalable way.
The lifelike vascularization of Aracari’s 3D models also enables the measurement of novel endpoints, such as tissue uptake, vascular toxicity, and the delivery of leukocytes through human vessels to screen immuno-oncology reagents. Aracari technology has successfully vascularized several micro-organs in vitro including human heart, liver, pancreas and brain, where a Blood-Brain Barrier forms naturally in our device.
► How do the devices work?
The device is portable and supports 16 autonomous VMO™/VMT™ platforms, while fitting in the palm of the hand (Figure 2.1). Each VMO™ develops in 4-5 days within a diamond-shaped chamber measuring 1 x 2 mm. Microfluidic channels function as an artery and vein, mirroring the normal anatomy and physiology of a human organ (Figure 2.2). Naturally-forming blood vessels grow within the chamber and connect the two outer channels (Figure 2.3). A blood substitute flows through the vessels, providing nutrients (and drugs) to the surrounding cells in a completely physiological manner, recreating a tissue or tumor in an in vivo-like environment.(Figure 2.4).
► Describe your benefits of working with Science Exchange.
These days, many pharma and biotech sponsor organizations are using Science Exchange to manage their external R&D projects. By serving as a provider on the Science Exchange platform, we are able to rapidly start projects with these clients, since all work is covered by Science Exchange’s standardized agreement and no further legal steps are required. Furthermore, the platform has made project management, invoicing, and payment much easier.