Tissue chips - innovative tools for drug development and disease modeling

Lab Chip. 2017 Sep 12;17(18):3026-3036. doi: 10.1039/c7lc00462a.


The high rate of failure during drug development is well-known, however recent advances in tissue engineering and microfabrication have contributed to the development of microphysiological systems (MPS), or 'organs-on-chips' that recapitulate the function of human organs. These 'tissue chips' could be utilized for drug screening and safety testing to potentially transform the early stages of the drug development process. They can also be used to model disease states, providing new tools for the understanding of disease mechanisms and pathologies, and assessing effectiveness of new therapies. In the future, they could be used to test new treatments and therapeutics in populations - via clinical trials-on-chips - and individuals, paving the way for precision medicine. Here we will discuss the wide-ranging and promising future of tissue chips, as well as challenges facing their development.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biomedical Research
  • Drug Discovery*
  • Humans
  • Lab-On-A-Chip Devices*
  • Microfluidic Analytical Techniques
  • Models, Biological*
  • Tissue Engineering*