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Project grant

Refining in vivo studies of cancer metastasis with next-generation explant-in-chip perfusion models

Portrait of Professor Darryl Overby

At a glance

Pending start
Award date
September 2022 - August 2025
Grant amount
Principal investigator
Professor Darryl Overby


Imperial College London


  • Reduction
  • Replacement
Read the abstract
View the grant profile on GtR



Why did we fund this project?

This award aims to develop a perfusion device to study early stages of metastasis in brain, lung and liver tissue replacing the use of some mouse studies in cancer research.

Metastasis is responsible for over 90% of deaths in cancer patients. A range of in vitro and in vivo models have been developed to better understand metastasis but as tissue microenvironment is key for various metastatic stages in vivo models are often favoured. The studies include implanting cancerous cells, either cell lines or patient cells, into mice to determine where secondary tumours form. Large groups of mice are required as animals are culled at specific time points to assess the extent of cancer cell colonisation. Professor Darryl Overby will develop an “explant-on-chip” device, using surgically-resected tissue which maintains the tissue microenvironment. Cancer cells will then be perfused through the explant by sealing the tissue in a microchannel so cells enter the vasculature replicating early metastatic events.