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The Future: You-on-a-Chip

June 1, 2015

By Chris Hinojosa Associate Director of Discovery
By Chris Hinojosa Associate Director of Discovery

Image:

Concept for real-time loop between patient, primary care and a personalized biochip.

The Future: You-on-a-Chip

A Bold New Personal Health Research Program.

Emulate is accelerating progress toward a new era of precision medicine and personalized health. This is an emerging approach for disease treatment and prevention that takes into account the genes, environment, and lifestyle of each person.

With the potential for a unique Organ-on-Chip personalized with your own living cells we could transform the way each of us understand our own health and the way in which medicine is practiced.

 

“This will open up new ways for us to design truly personalized treatments, based on each patient’s unique genetic profile on their own individualized chips.” – Shlomo Melmed, M.D., Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Medical Faculty at Cedars-Sinai.

By combining our Organs-on-Chips with induced pluripotent stem cells (or iPS cells), we have the potential to open a new world of possibilities for personalized health. iPS cells can be generated directly from adult cells and programmed to give rise to every other cell type in the body such as neurons, heart, pancreatic, and liver cells.  We can obtain iPS cells from an individual’s skin or blood cells and program them into different tissue types to create patient-specific Organs-on-Chips.

Our plans include creating individually tailored Organs-on-Chips with a patient’s own cells, to allow biology to be predicted on a person-by-person basis.  Imagine one day being able to use your own cells to create a personal Lung-on-Chip, your own Heart-on-Chip, or even your own “Body-on-a-Chip”.