Home Forums *News Top Industry News November 18 – December 1, 2023

Top Industry News November 18 – December 1, 2023

Home Forums *News Top Industry News November 18 – December 1, 2023

    • Lauren Feldman

      C&EN (November 30, 2023) European court rejects Symrise bid to avoid animal tests

      The German specialty chemical firm Symrise will be forced to conduct animal testing on two chemicals used as UV filters in sunscreens after a European court ruling on Nov. 22. The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) requested the tests in 2018, but Symrise took the issue to the agency’s board of appeal, the first point of call in legal disputes with the agency. The appeal was dismissed, and Symrise took its case to the European General Court in 2020. The long-running dispute highlights the conflict between a European ban on animal testing of cosmetic ingredients and REACH —a database for the registration, evaluation, authorization, and restriction of chemicals—data requirements.


      GEN (November 29, 2023) Multi-Chambered Heart Organoids Allow Study of Organ Development and Defects

      Scientists at the Institute of Molecular Biotechnology (IMBA) of the Austrian Academy of Sciences have developed a multi-chamber organoid that mirrors the heart’s intricate structure. The human cardioid platform recapitulates the development of all major embryonic heart compartments, including right and left ventricles, atria, outflow tract, and atrioventricular canal. The developers suggest the technology will help scientists generate a screening platform for use in drug development, toxicology studies, and to help understand heart development. 


      Vox (November 29, 2023) Kristie Sullivan is quietly, and effectively, fighting animal testing

      For two decades, Kristie Sullivan has been working behind the scenes with some of the world’s largest governments and corporations to reduce experiments on animals. A toxicologist by training, Sullivan got her start in 2003 at the nonprofit Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine by working with chemical companies to identify where they could reduce animal tests. In the early 2010s, her work took her to Europe, where she began to reform animal testing on the world stage through the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), and in 2016, Sullivan played a key role in shaping major US chemical reform legislation that directs the EPA and the chemical industry to use non-animal testing methods. There’s still a long way to go toward changing the chemical safety testing landscape, but thanks to the work of Sullivan and her colleagues, governments and corporations increasingly understand that they can reduce or replace animal testing of consumer products, and in many cases, improve scientific outcomes too.


      The Hindu (November 28, 2023) Animal use in drug research is alarmingly high, says CSIR-CCMB director

      CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology director Vinay Nandicoori observed that the number of animals used for bringing a single drug into human trials is alarmingly high and hoped that labs would start adopting predictive human model systems soon to prevent this. He was addressing a conclave organized by the Atal Incubation Centre – (AIC-CCMB)’s Centre for Predictive Human Model Systems (CPHMS) recently with representatives of the scientific community and biotech industries, specifically contract research organizations (CROs), to discuss reducing animal testing for human drug development. The conclave was a culmination of a year-long study sponsored by the India Animal Fund to understand the adoption and financial impacts of using technologically advanced human model systems such as organoids and organ-on-chips that have proven to be more effective in predicting human responses compared to animal testing methods.


      Forbes (November 22, 2023) This Startup Raised $38 Million To Fill One Of The Biggest Gaps In Drug Discovery

      Vivodyne is building human organ tissues in the lab that can be used for preclinical testing of potential drugs, as well as AI systems that can rapidly collect and analyze data from those tests. According to Vivodyne CEO Andrei Georgescu, it’s a replacement for the large-scale, single cell lab models or animal testing that dominate the market today, which enable large-scale screening for treating infectious diseases or certain cancers, but they’re also labor intensive and not as useful for more complex diseases. On Wednesday, Nov. 22, the company announced that it has raised a $38 million seed round led by Khosla Ventures. Bison Ventures, MBX Ventures, Kairos Ventures and CS Ventures also participated in the round.


      Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology News (November 22, 2023) Vivodyne’s Lab Grown Human Tissue Platform Gets Real with $38 Million Seed Financing

      Vivodyne’s discovery pipeline and AI-driven platform, which hopes to help develop drugs by testing directly on lab-grown human organ tissues, announced the close of $38 million total in seed financing, led by Khosla Ventures.


      Endpoints News (November 22, 2023) Khosla Ventures leads $38M seed round for organoid startup Vivodyne

      Khosla Ventures is leading a seed round for a new biotech that aims to use artificial intelligence to jump into the world of organoids. Vivodyne announced the $38 million seed financing Wednesday morning, touting its platform’s ability to produce human-like tissue at every stage of drug development. The goal, CEO Andrei Georgescu told Endpoints News, is to slash preclinical testing times by reducing the need for animal testing, and use the platform to learn how compounds will interact with human cells at scale before actually testing them in people.


      LabPulse (November 21, 2023) AI concurs with humans in heart failure test, suggesting scalable approach to clinical trials

      Artificial intelligence (AI) may make clinical trials more efficient by accurately identifying events at scale, a retrospective analysis has found. The analysis, details of which were published in the journal JAMA Cardiology, applied a natural language processing (NLP) model for adjudicating heart failure hospitalizations to records from a clinical trial that ran from 2016 to 2019. The model was originally developed and tested in one healthcare system and then applied retrospectively to a study of the effects of a flu vaccine on heart failure patients. 


      Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (November 20, 2023) News Colonic Organoids Generate Functional Resident Macrophages

      Human colonic organoids (HCOs) made from pluripotent stem cells co-develop a variety of immune cells, including tissue-resident macrophages. And while they look like macrophages resident in the human gastrointestinal (GI) tract, they also act like them: the immune cells respond to inflammatory cues, secrete cytokines, and phagocytose bacteria. These data describe an approach to generate human organoid tissues with co-developing resident immune cells that could be used to model inflammatory diseases and the developmental roles of tissue-resident immune populations. The peer-reviewed research article “Development of functional resident macrophages in human pluripotent stem cell-derived colonic organoids and human fetal colon” was published in Cell Stem Cell


      Interesting Engineering (Novmeber 18, 2023) You can now 3D print and grow hair on engineered skin tissue

      In a groundbreaking development at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, scientists have successfully 3D-printed hair follicles in lab-grown human skin tissue. The research, published in the journal Science Advances, represents a significant stride forward in skin engineering and opens new avenues in regenerative medicine. 


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