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Disease models

In vitro liver platform to model malaria infection

A hepatocyte culture model could be used to model liver-stage infection with Plasmodium falciparum or Plasmodium vivax. Previously, hepatocytes and supportive stromal cells were co-cultured to generate an in vitro liver model that was stable for 4−6 weeks and compatible with medium-throughput screens. In the current model, cryopreserved human hepatocytes combined with cryopreserved P. falciparum and P. vivax samples were conducive to liver-stage growth of the parasites. This system was adapted to 96-well format to enable the screening and identification of antimalarial compounds. Next steps could include using the model to screen for antimalarial compounds.

SciBX 6(31); doi:10.1038/scibx.2013.838
Published online Aug. 15, 2013

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March, S. et al. Cell Host Microbe; published online July 18, 2013;
Contact: Sangeeta N. Bhatia, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Mass.