Medical Innovation Xccelerator (MIX)


We conduct contract research for pharmaceutical companies to characterize the pharmacology and/or toxicology of their drug candidates using whole kidney perfusion or precision-cut kidney slices. Our tissue models resemble the kidneys more closely than conventional models, such as cell cultures, and are therefore able to predict drug effects much more accurately.

Whole kidney perfusion

What is whole kidney perfusion?

Whole kidney perfusion is a rapidly evolving technique in which a nutrient-rich and oxygenated solution is pumped through kidneys in a pulsatile manner – just like blood – to preserve organ function ex vivo (source).

Although originally developed to sustain the viability of donor organs, whole kidney perfusion can also be used to investigate the effects of promising drug candidates by adding them to perfusion solutions (source).

Whole kidney perfusion…

  • allows compounds to be tested in an entire kidney
  • can be used to study renal clearance of compounds
  • predicts short-term drug effects more accurately
  • facilitates the selection of promising drug candidates

Did you know?

The use of hypothermic machine perfusion has become standard practice in many transplantation centers to preserve the viability of kidneys donated after circulatory death (source).

1. Organ retrieval

We obtain kidneys from an abattoir and connect them to perfusion machines on the spot.

2. Machine perfusion

Kidneys are subsequently perfused with solutions that contain compounds of interest.

3. Sample analysis

Our setup allows us to collect samples during the entire perfusion process.

Precision-cut kidney slices

What are precision-cut kidney slices?

Precision-cut kidney slices (PCKS) are viable explants prepared from rodent, porcine, or (diseased) human tissue and can be cultured for up to a few days while retaining structural and functional features of kidney tissue (source).

Depending on the species from which kidney tissue was collected, hundreds or even thousands of PCKS can be prepared, thus allowing for a wide range of experimental conditions to be tested simultaneously (source).

Precision-cut kidney slices…

  • closely resemble the kidney micro-environment
  • allow for a wide range of conditions to be tested
  • are useful to assess pharmacology and toxicology
  • support decision-making during drug discovery

Did you know?

One of the main strengths of PCKS is that they contain various cell types, such as epithelial cells and mesenchymal cells, which are present in their natural extracellular matrix (source).

1. Slice preparation

We use specialized equipment to rapidly prepare slices with consistent dimensions.

2. Slice incubation

Slices are then transferred to culture medium, after which we add compounds.

3. Slice analysis

After an incubation of up to 48 hours, slices are sampled and subsequently analyzed.

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