High Dimensional Structure-Activity Relationship Approach in Cell-Based Screening for Drug Effects in Intestine

Case ID:

This technology is a high throughput assay utilizing 3D cell culture and multiplex antibody staining techniques to study features of the intestine under various conditions. This technology can be utilized to screen drugs for intestine-related diseases and/or examine drugs for gut toxicity. A complimentary software is then used to measure and analyze these characteristics. A major advantage of this invention is that measurements are taken at single cell level so that subgroups of cells can be formed and more accurate information on these subgroups can be obtained.


Cell-based assays have been a key component in the drug development process. They have been used to test the cytotoxicity, biological activity, biochemical mechanisms and off-target interactions of potential compounds. They are easily amenable to high-throughput screening to test many compounds under different conditions in parallel. Higher complexity organoid cultures of various cancer cells have been developed for drug screening. These spheroids show gene expression profiles that are closer to clinical profiles than traditional cell line cultures. In addition, a top reason why a drug may fail in clinical trials is that they induce potent gut toxicity. Therefore, a high-throughput cell assay using organoids grown from intestine cells would be quite attractive to pharma industry.



  • High-throughput drug screening
  • 3D cell-based assays
  • Toxicity screening for drugs



  • Rapid
  • High dimensional characterization
  • Predictable
  • Complex
  • Accurate
  • Versatile
Patent Information:
Contact For More Information:
Lewis Humphreys
Licensing Manager, Eller College of Mngmt & OTT
The University of Arizona
Lead Inventor(s):
Curtis Thorne
Elaheh Alizadeh
Kelvin Pond