Dr Mike Raxworthy, Dr Lorenzo Pio Serino and Dr Peter Iddon are co-authors of a paper just published online in Biofabrication. The paper, "A three dimensional model of primary bovine endometrium using an electrospun scaffold", describes collaborative work carried out by Dr Siân MacKintosh of Swansea University using Neotherix electrospun scaffold technology to create a functional 3D model of bovine endometrium. Stromal and epithelial cells were grown on the Neotherix scaffold, resulting in a layered arrangement similar to native endometrium. Analysis confirmed the appropriate expression of key biomarkers for this tissue type.
This 3D model could be used for the study of the pathophysiology of this commercially important tissue. In cattle the endometrium plays key roles in reproduction, and diseases affecting this tissue are a large burden to the farming industry. For example, according to senior author Professor Martin Sheldon , infection of the uterus following calving is estimated to cost the EU farming industry €1.4bn annually due to the cost of treatment, infertility and reduced milk yields.
This approach could be used to create other species-specific 3D models of important tissue types, including human tissue, and these results are further evidence of the versatility of electrospun scaffolds in the construction of in vitro disease and tissue models.
For more detail please see the published paper MacKintosh, SB, Serino, LP, Iddon, PD, Brown, R, Conlan, RS, Wright, CJ, Maffeis, TGG, Raxworthy, MJ, and Sheldon, IM, Biofabrication 2015, 7:025010 . A pre-print version is also available here .