Image of the Day: Brain Barrier Balls

In a new and improved in vitro model of the blood-brain barrier, scientists allow a milieu of cells to grow together and form multicellular structures.

Jun 7, 2017
The Scientist Staff

Fluorescent image depicting tight junctions (stained in green) on the multicellular structures' surface. Tight junctions, much like the blood-brain barrier, work to keep external molecules from crossing over.

CHOI-FONG CHO, BRIGHAM AND WOMEN'S HOSPITAL

   "Our model takes a new approach to mimic the blood-brain barrier outside of a living system. These miniature spheroids are relatively straightforward to culture, and yet it is able to reproduce many of the key blood-brain barrier properties and functions," lead author Choi-Fong Cho of Brigham and Women's Hospital said in a news release.      

See C.-F. Cho et al., “Blood-brain-barrier spheroids as an in vitro screening platform for brain-penetrating agents,” Nature Communications, doi:10.1039/ncomms15623, 2017.