A dynamic perfusion based blood-brain barrier model for cytotoxicity testing and drug permeation

Basma Elbakary, Raj K. S. Badhan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The blood-brain barrier (BBB) serves to protect and regulate the CNS microenvironment. The development of an in-vitro mimic of the BBB requires recapitulating the correct phenotype of the in-vivo BBB, particularly for drug permeation studies. However the majority of widely used BBB models demonstrate low transendothelial electrical resistance (TEER) and poor BBB phenotype. The application of shear stress is known to enhance tight junction formation and hence improve the barrier function. We utilised a high TEER primary porcine brain microvascular endothelial cell (PBMEC) culture to assess the impact of shear stress on barrier formation using the Kirkstall QuasiVivo 600 (QV600) multi-chamber perfusion system. The application of shear stress resulted in a reorientation and enhancement of tight junction formation on both coverslip and permeable inserts, in addition to enhancing and maintaining TEER for longer, when compared to static conditions. Furthermore, the functional consequences of this was demonstrated with the reduction in flux of mitoxantrone across PBMEC monolayers. The QV600 perfusion system may service as a viable tool to enhance and maintain the high TEER PBMEC system for use in in-vitro BBB models.
Original languageEnglish
Article number3788
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2 Mar 2020

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