Skip to main content
NC3Rs: National Centre for the Replacement Refinement & Reduction of Animals in Research
Project grant

Live monitoring of foreign-body response in animals by diffuse Raman spectroscopy

Portrait of Professor Ioan Notingher

At a glance

In progress
Award date
October 2021 - March 2024
Grant amount
£506,474
Principal investigator
Professor Ioan Notingher
Institute
University of Nottingham

R

  • Reduction
Read the abstract
View the grant profile on GtR

Contents

Overview

Why did we fund this project?

This award aims to develop a portable device using diffuse Raman spectroscopy to enable the immune response to biomaterials to be tracked longitudinally reducing the overall number of rodents used in a study.

New biomaterials are developed for a number of purposes such as in regenerative medicine. During development these materials undergo a series of regulatory tests, including determining whether the material causes a foreign body response, where inflammation leads to the encapsulation of the biomaterial in a fibrous tissue. These tests are performed in vivo, typically in rodents, where animals are sacrificed at various time points to establish tissue response to the biomaterial. Professor Ioan Notingher has previously demonstrated in tissue phantoms and cadavers that Spatially-offset Raman Spectroscopy can detect inflammation and alterations in collagen density, both hallmarks of the foreign body response. However, these changes are small, which results in limited sensitivity using Spatially-offset Raman Spectroscopy preventing the technique being used in in vivo studies.

Ioan will optimise the method by combining diffuse Raman spectroscopy with computer modelling of light propagation in skin. This optimisation will increase the sensitivity of the technique allowing detection of key molecular changes deeper into the skin. He will design a handheld device and optimise the detection limit and accuracy of the probe to increase the sensitivity of the technique. With the optimised configuration, longitudinal studies on the molecular changes in foreign body response will be performed in a single animal to demonstrate the utility of the device.