16th January 2019
Presented by the PETA International Science Consortium and Epithelix
In December 2018, the PETA International Science Consortium Ltd. and Epithelix Sàrl awarded free three-dimensional (3-D) reconstructed human respiratory tissue models manufactured by Epithelix to researchers from the United States, the United Kingdom, and Germany. The models, MucilAir™ and SmallAir™, mimic different regions of the respiratory tract and can be used to test cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, industrial chemicals, pesticides, household products, cigarette smoke, and viruses.
After receiving proposals from all around the world, three researchers were chosen based on their proposals’ scientific merit and potential to use the tissues to replace animals in inhalation testing:
First Place ($5,000 award)
Kristine Nishida, from the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, will expose the 3-D tissues to cigarette smoke to elucidate the mechanism underlying the progression of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). She will also study tissues from human donors with COPD to gain a deeper understanding of the disease pathogenesis and how to reverse its effects.
Second Place ($2,500 award each)
Dr Chang Guo, Public Health England, will use the tissues for toxicity testing of carbon nanotubes.
Dr Richard Gminski, University of Freiburg, will use the tissues to evaluate the efficacy of drugs on Klebsiella pneumoniae, an antibiotic-resistant bacterium that poses a health threat to hospital patients worldwide.