Research has shown that mechanical cues and contractility can dictate the fate of a human cell. In diseases such as cancer, 90% of cancer patients die due to the spreading of cancer (metastasis). Cancer spreading (invasion) is directed by mechanical factors surrounding the tissues, whereas in the cardiovascular disease (CVD) mechanical cues give rises to stiffening of the cellular microenvironment causing life threatening conditions such as hypertension, and hyperlipidaemia. According to WHO, 4 out of 5 CVD deaths, can be attributable to heart attacks and strokes, although current models like cancer invasion/Transwell and cardiac contractility assays can produce reasonable response to environment modulation, the setup differs substantially from animal-based model and doesn’t give quantitative readouts. Further these models cannot effectively predict the response of a patient to the drug. Hence, creating new innovative technology and parameters for drug assessment which mimics the in vivo environment is an absolute necessity.
ForceBiology offer a HTS platform (multiwell format) which quantifies cellular forces/contractility to assess drug-target ratio (the affinity of a drug for its biological target) and contribute towards predictability and assessment of drugs (mechano-therapeutics). Our platform will enable discovery of small molecule drugs (Mechanomedicine) that regulate cellular force generation. Our HTS platform can be used in two or more disease types, with quantitative and label-free readouts at reduced cost and assay time.
Our vision is to spin out as a service company for invitro drug screening and discovery, our cell-based screening platform, as a service company will test drug’s efficacy for their inhibitory effect against cancer invasion potential and cardiovascular contractility. As an initial start, we plan to have two different sets of consumers (I) product sales to universities and big pharma (ii) service to small pharma/biotech. This is because our cell-based assay can be used in different situations: (i) Research tool (ii) Pharma assay.