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ATHENA desktop human “body” reduces need for animal drug tests

ATHENA project team is developing four human organ constructs that are based on a significantly miniaturized platform.
December 22, 2014
ATHENA desktop human “body” reduces need for animal drug tests

ATHENA project team is developing four human organ constructs that are based on a significantly miniaturized platform.

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“By developing this ‘homo minutus,’ we are stepping beyond the need for animal or Petri dish testing: There are huge benefits in developing drug and toxicity analysis systems that can mimic the response of actual human organs,” said Rashi Iyer.

ATHENA desktop human “body” reduces need for animal drug tests

Creation of surrogate human organs could revolutionize the way biologists and medical personnel screen new drugs or toxic agents.

ATHENA, the Advanced Tissue-engineered Human Ectypal Network Analyzer project team, is developing four human organ constructs—liver, heart, lung and kidney—that are based on a significantly miniaturized platform.

ATHENA
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ATHENA, the Desktop Human “Body”

Each organ component will be about the size of a smartphone screen, and the whole ATHENA “body” of interconnected organs would fit neatly on a desk.

The holistic dynamic system more realistically mimics the human physiological environment than static human cells in a dish, demonstrating chemical effects on human organs as never before.


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