MatTek Unveils Cutting Edge EpiLiver Model for Enhanced Preclinical Drug Development

Posted on January 23, 2024 |
Categories News

The model of the human liver could revolutionize how drug makers identify compounds that cause late-stage failures due to liver toxicity.

Ashland, Massachusetts — MatTek Life Sciences, a pioneering leader in human tissue engineering, proudly announced today the beta launch of its groundbreaking EpiLiver tissue model. This state-of-the-art model of the human liver represents a significant leap forward in preclinical research, offering unprecedented insights into the performance of drugs metabolized by the liver during clinical trials.

The human liver plays a critical role in drug metabolism, and ensuring the safety and efficacy of pharmaceuticals is a paramount concern in the drug development process. It currently takes on average 12 years and more than $1 billion to bring a drug from discovery to market. Even with significant investments in the process, about 90% of drugs ultimately fail to reach the market. Nearly 1 in 5 of those failures are caused by liver damage in human clinical trials that was not predicted in the preclinical phase. Beyond the clinic, one third of all drugs withdrawn from the market are due to drug-induced liver injury (DILI).

“One of the biggest challenges in pharmaceutical development is late-stage clinical failure due to unforeseen liver toxicity in the clinic,” said Alex Armento, MatTek CEO. “We’ve responded to this challenge with a revolutionary solution that leverages our in vitro tissue technology to bring an entirely new way to model human liver function that can provide clearer insight into potential hepatic reactions during the preclinical phase.” EpiLiver joins EpiIntestinal and EpiKidney (beta) as another of MatTek’s tissues designed for pharmaceutical endpoints.

In a market with many options for liver models including tissue slices and liver spheroids, EpiLiver is unique. It is a 3D human liver model that more closely mimics the structure and function of the native organ, providing a more realistic environment for drug testing. This advanced lab-grown tissue has the potential to significantly improve the accuracy of preclinical studies, reducing the risk of adverse effects in later clinical trials.

Available now as a beta product, MatTek will work with biotech and pharmaceutical scientists to continue to refine the tissue to ensure its performance is in line with pharmaceutical industry expectations. “EpiLiver performs exceptionally well as a predictor of drug-induced hepatotoxicity, and a valuable tool for viral infection studies and antiviral research. We are continuing to refine its ability to evaluate metabolism and efficacy,” said Dr. Seyoum Ayehunie, MatTek’s chief scientific officer. “The beta testing program includes the opportunity for pharmaceutical scientists to have input on enhancing the complexity of the model, and refining testing endpoints.”

EpiLiver holds the potential to reshape the landscape of preclinical studies, providing pharmaceutical companies with a powerful tool to enhance the safety and efficacy of new drug candidates. For more information on EpiLiver and to apply to be part of the beta testing program, please visit the MatTek website.


About MatTek Life Sciences

Founded in 1985, MatTek Life Sciences began producing three-dimensional human tissue models as reliable replacements for animal testing. MatTek’s physiologically advanced tissue models empower companies in the cosmetics, chemical, and pharmaceutical industries to achieve their goals of non-animal testing while lowering preclinical costs and providing human-relevant results. With locations in the US and Europe, today MatTek’s offerings include skin, eye, oral, respiratory, vaginal, and intestinal tissue models including disease modeling, validated, and custom testing services, multiple donor primary cells, culture media, and highly optical culture ware.

For more information contact:
Margaux Babineau
Director of Marketing

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