A science-philosophy research project funded by the Institute for Philosophy of Scientific and Technological Practice (FAST) at University Campus Bio-Medico, Rome.
Start: April 2016
Duration: 1+1 years
Cells-on-chip are in vitro models of biological microenvironments that combine co-culture protocols and microfluidic technologies: they consist in interconnected compartments linked through a microfluidic circulatory system. They allow a high degree of control over the experimental parameters, and the use of modern microscopy.
The University Campus Bio-Medico hosts an interdisciplinary consortium working on cell chips for several research projects. The consortium is formed by:
- Tissue Engineering Unit (Prof. Alberto Rainer)
- Translational Oncology Unit (Prof. Daniele Santini)
- Non-linear Physics and Mathematical Modeling Unit (Prof. Alessio Gizzi)
The experimental part of the project will build an on-chip model of tumor interaction with different immune cell populations.
This innovative experimental model raises issues of several kinds:
- Technical and methodological
On these questions, the scientific units will collaborate with a Unit of Philosophy of Scientific and Technological Practice and Philosophy of Biology composed by:
- Marta Bertolaso, Assistant Professor of Philosophy of Science
- Ilaria Malagrinò, PhD
- Anna Maria Dieli, PhD student
- Emanuele Serrelli, PhD
- Silvia Caianiello, Researcher, CNR
In summary, the project will determine the quality of the new model as a proof of concept not only for the study of cancer and tissue organization, but also for the consideration of cell chips as dynamic embodied selves (“selves-on-chips”).