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Connecting neural networks: Nervous-system-on-Chip Technology

Connecting neural networks: Nervous-system-on-Chip Technology

Objective

Novel micro-engineered in vitro models have been developed to mimic key functions of human organs. These so-called organ-on-chips (OoC) recapitulate the structure and function of human organs, and are particularly important for scientific research that is underlying our knowledge base of diseases and for the pre-clinical development of novel therapeutics. However, the application of these models has its limitations as they do not mimic the complexity and functioning of complete organ systems. Connectivity between cells and the linkage between different components of organ systems is essential in studying complex conditions such as neurodegenerative diseases. These diseases form a major challenge for the scientific community and are associated with a heavy burden on society and the global healthcare systems. To effectively grasp the complexity of neurodegenerative disorders, the CONNECT consortium develops the next level in vitro model systems for the nervous system and puts it firmly on the map. The project acts at the convergence of a multitude of disciplines including nanofabrication, microfluidics, stem cell technology, tissue engineering and advanced imaging. The successful completion of this high risk-high gain project will enable for the first time to study a complete organ system and deliver a viable paradigm for future technology to study connectivity in the nervous system. The proposed work in this project offers a unique opportunity to culture individual nervous system components and connect them in a single “smart” microfluidic chip (CONNECT platform), forming an elementary three compartment model from the central nervous system (CNS) to the peripheral nervous system (PNS). As Proof-of-Principle, CONNECT will demonstrate the feasibility of this system model in Parkinson’s Disease. This provides CONNECT with novel insights, thereby paving the way for future development of therapeutic strategies.
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Coordinator

TECHNISCHE UNIVERSITEIT EINDHOVEN

Address

Groene Loper 3
5612 Ae Eindhoven

Netherlands

Activity type

Higher or Secondary Education Establishments

EU Contribution

€ 1 675 000

Participants (6)

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UNIVERSITE DU LUXEMBOURG

Luxembourg

EU Contribution

€ 1 247 005

THE UNIVERSITY OF SHEFFIELD

United Kingdom

EU Contribution

€ 1 010 307,50

AALTO KORKEAKOULUSAATIO SR

Finland

EU Contribution

€ 903 680

KATHOLIEKE UNIVERSITEIT LEUVEN

Belgium

EU Contribution

€ 953 125

ERASMUS UNIVERSITAIR MEDISCH CENTRUM ROTTERDAM

Netherlands

EU Contribution

€ 842 500

FFUND BV

Netherlands

EU Contribution

€ 176 250

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 824070

Status

Ongoing project

  • Start date

    1 January 2019

  • End date

    31 December 2023

Funded under:

H2020-EU.1.2.2.

  • Overall budget:

    € 6 807 867,50

  • EU contribution

    € 6 807 867,50

Coordinated by:

TECHNISCHE UNIVERSITEIT EINDHOVEN

Netherlands