What happens in tissues and organs and how do they react to pharmaceutical substances? Three-dimensional cell cultures can reproduce reality far better than a single-cell layer can. With good reason. Reality is far from two-dimensional. A company called 300MICRONS GmbH develops films with tiny indentations that provide optimal conditions for cells to grow into 3D cell aggregates.
Secondary hop compounds appear to have a positive effect on the immune system and therefore have the potential to be used for the treatment and prevention of cancer. However, the bioavailability of hop compounds in the human body is relatively poor. Researchers from Hohenheim and Tübingen are therefore looking for a way to increase their absorption rate.
With 6 million euros of EU funding, the CARAT project aims to optimise a technology called CAR T that is used to equip T cells with antibody fragments and specifically direct them to destroy cancer cells. The CARAT consortium comprises a multinational team of experts from the Institute for Cell- and Gene Therapy at the Freiburg University Medical Center led by Prof. Dr. Toni Cathomen and seven partner institutions. Cathomen’s team is developing the gene scissors required for the technology.
The targeted modification of genomes (also called gene editing or genome editing) using CRISPR/Cas is extraordinarily accurate and also has the potential to cure hereditary diseases. However, the benefits of genome editing raise ethical concerns and involve risks that need to be taken seriously.