Automating the Cultivation on Brain Organoids: A Novel Approach

New method for growing brain organoids on a microchip

A team of engineers at UC Santa Cruz has developed a new method for remote automation of the growth of cerebral organoids–miniature, three-dimensional models of brain tissue grown from stem cells. The use of cerebral organoids allows researchers to study the brain’s key functions with an accuracy that is not possible using other models. This can have implications for the understanding of brain development as well as the effects of pharmaceuticals for treating cancer and other diseases.

Researchers from the UCSC Braingeneers Group have published a study in Scientific Reports that details their automated and internet-connected microfluidics systems, called \”Autoculture.\” This system delivers liquid feeding to individual cerebral organoids to optimize their growth, without the need for any human intervention with the tissue cultures.

It takes a lot of experience and consistency to keep the exact conditions for cell proliferation over several weeks or even months. This study demonstrated that an automated system can be used to eliminate human error or interference in cell culture growth, allowing for more robust results and allowing more scientists to access opportunities to conduct research using human brain models.