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Ex vivo cystic fibrosis lung model

A flexible, realistic and ethical model for studying chronic lung infections

Our ex vivo model of chronic bacterial lung infection avoids some key drawbacks of in vitro or animal models of lung infection. We source pig lungs from a local butcher (they are a byproduct of the meat industry) and dissect small sections of tissue. These are combined with bespoke culture media designed to mimic human lung secretions. This provides a clinically valid structural and chemical environment, in which microbial communities may be cultured for several weeks in standard multiwell tissue culture plates. The system is cheap, high throughput and highly flexible, providing an opportunity to replace the use of live animals in infection research. We are keen to discuss potential collaboration or knowledge transfer to further research into antibiotic-resistant infections.

Access to the model and our team's expertise for biofilm research and early-stage antibiofilm R&D is available via collaboration, and we can offer screening of in-development antimicrobial agents via the Warwick Antimicrobial Screening Facility. For later-stage commercial biocide testing, our industrial partners Perfectus Biomed offer access to the model under ISO17025 / EN 1276.Link opens in a new window..

For more information please contact Dr Freya Harrison.