In vitro three-dimensional trachea model
Background: The airway represents also an important entry gate for many different pathogenic agents and environmental impacts. A three dimensional model of the trachea becomes also more and more important as an alternative for animal experiments because it shows similarities in structure and function of the human trachea. This model could be used as a test system for the analysis of different substances, to test the toxicology and it could be also used as a biological graft. Methods: For the construction of a three-dimensional trachea model, we isolate porcine cells with an enzymatic treatment and seed them in preliminary tests on 24-well inserts with a pore size of 1 ?m. For further tests, the colonisation also occurs in an air liquid interface in a special biomembrane reactor with a pulsatile flow of the optimized cell culture medium and regulate breathing rate. The cell characterization occurs via histological and immunohistological methods and measurement of the ciliary beat frequency and beating direction by a high speed camera. Results: In preliminary tests porcine respiratory cells are vital and show a high rate of proliferation and also longterm ciliary activity. There are ongoing experiments with a co-culture of fibroblast cells and ciliated epithelium cells and tests to initiate the metachrone ciliary beat in the bioreactor system. Perspective: A functional tubular trachea test system in a bioreactor in which the different cells of the trachea are cultivated as a co-culture under physiological conditions and simulation of the respiration is used for toxicological analysis of different nanomaterials and environmental effects.