The closer an in vitro system can simulate the relevant physiological parameters (e.g. transition time, pH, enzyme secretions, fecal inoculum…) that characterize a specific in vivo condition, the higher is going to be the scientific value of such a simulation. Following this key principle, all models at ProDigest, can be personalized by fine-tuning the gastrointestinal tract simulators to mimic particular population groups.
The SHIME®, mini-SHIME®, short-term colon and Colon-on-a-plate® technology platforms can host the microbiome derived from specific population groups like infants, toddlers, adults, and elderly. Even subgroups can be represented. For example, breast-fed babies versus formulation-fed babies to investigate the differential impact of test products on the microbiome. Apart from comparing specific populations, the flexibility of our colonic simulators ensures that interindividual variability can always be addressed in your research.
Our technology platforms also enable us to study dysbiotic communities linked to human diseases (e.g. inflammatory bowel disease; presence of specific pathogens) or induced by specific treatments (e.g. antibiotics). Our models are an excellent tool to study the efficacy of treatments in restoring or improving the gut microbiota composition and metabolic functionality.
Personalisation is not limited to the microbiome, the physiological parameters of the GI tract simulation can be adjusted to specific population groups. Adjustment of digestion parameters to those of an infant leads to biorelevant data for the development of feeding formulations. The impact of diet on bioavailability of a product can be studied by changing the food matrix in the Upper GI tract simulation. Achlorhydria or hypochlorhydria have been simulated in the DIAMOD®, supporting development of patient-centric drug formulation strategies.
Capitalizing on the long-standing expertise in human gastrointestinal processes, ProDigest has extended all its platforms to other species. The SPIME™ (Simulator of the Pig Intestinal Microbial Ecosystem), SCIME™ (Simulator of the Canine Intestinal Microbial Ecosystem) and SFIMETM (Simulator of the Feline Intestinal Microbial Ecosystem) models are deeply validated and used for the screening and identification of new feed ingredients or bioactive compounds, development of formulations and dosage. In our short-term setups other animals can also be simulated. Even in the pharmaceutical industry, such platforms are suitable for validation of pre-clinical animal models. Compared to in vivo studies, ProDigest’s models have the advantage of operating without interference of environmental confounding factors, leading to a significant improvement of the effect/noise ratio. ProDigest’s models offer the quantification of what is happening inside the gastrointestinal tract, thereby providing data that are complementary to in vivo ones.