(521a) Next-Generation Neurovascular Models Built from Human iPSCs

Lippmann, E. - Presenter, Vanderbilt University
Neal, E., Vanderbilt University
O'Grady, B., Vanderbilt University
Bellan, L., Vanderbilt University
Faley, S., Vanderbilt University
Balotin, K., Vanderbilt University
Many areas of academic research and industry, including neuroscience, pharmacology, drug discovery, and biotechnology, stand to benefit from the availability of in vitro models that mimic the cellular composition, architecture, and function of endogenous human tissue structures. Based on recent phase three clinical trials failures for neurodegenerative disease, there is an especially pressing need for human neurovascular models that can appropriately mimic disease and be used for preclinical assays of drug efficacy. With this goal in mind, I will describe our emerging efforts towards producing biomimetic neurovascular tissue structures from human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), including: (1) development of a simplified serum-free method for differentiating iPSCs into blood-brain barrier (BBB) endothelial cells, (2) assembly of BBB endothelial cells in 3D culture platforms and assessment of their long-term function, and (3) fabrication of a novel biomaterial to support unified neurovascular constructs.