Introduction to the Blood-Brain Barrier
The blood-brain barrier (BBB) explains why certain substances circulating in the blood are able to get into the brain and others do not. The BBB is formed by brain capillaries that look like simple tubes of endothelial cells. Experimental and clinical evidence suggests that the BBB maintains the chemical environment for neuronal function and protects the brain from harmful substances. The blood-brain barrier is therefore crucial for complex issues such as drug delivery, pathogenesis of chronic neurological diseases, and issues related to bio-defense. We have developed a practical in vitro model that accurately reflects BBB characteristics.
Benefits of Flocel’s in vitro BBB Model
In contrast to other available models of the blood-brain barrier, Flocel's Dynamic In vitro Blood-Brain Barrier (DIV-BBB) respects the anatomical aspects of the in situ endothelial cell-astrocyte interactions and replicates the physiological levels of shear stress to which in situ endothelial cells are exposed. The DIV-BBB allows formation of physiological transendothelial resistance, and formation of gap junctions that can be easily visualized at the electron microscope or determined experimentally with the use of tracers.
Flocel Inc. is the first blood-brain barrier company in the US. It offers an array of preclinical tools to study and understand the blood-brain barrier and its function. Flocel also offers consulting services for research or clinical studies related to the BBB. These include but are not limited to drug delivery, alternatives to animal studies, non-invasive measurements of BBB function in human subjects and detection of concussions.