Christel Bergström receives SEK 2.4 million grant to develop virtual intestines

2021-11-08

Christel Bergström, Professor at the Faculty of Pharmacy, receives SEK 2.4 million from the Swedish Research Council for the development of virtual intestinal environments that can provide key resources in studies of how drugs will behave in the intestine.

Christel Bergström, Professor of Molecular Pharmaceutics
Christel Bergström, Professor of Molecular Pharmaceutics

The Swedish Research Council awards SEK 2.4 million to the project En datorbaserad magtarm-kanal för att förutsäga ålder och sjukdomseffekter på orala mediciner (“A computer-based gastrointestinal tract to predict age and disease effects on oral drugs”) that is to be conducted by Christel Bergström, Professor of Molecular Pharmaceutics at Uppsala University's Department of Pharmacy. The project will last 2022-2024, aiming to continue the development of the virtual intestinal environments that Christel Bergström's research team has both developed and established.

“The virtual intestine that we have created corresponds to that of a healthy adult. In our upcoming project, we will study what intestinal fluids looks like in younger children, both during fasting and the semi-fasting state that exists in babies, who in principle always have degraded milk in their intestinal fluids. In an older population, we will study how different diseases, especially Alzheimer's and Parkinson's, can affect the intestinal fluid,” says Christel Bergström.

Christel Bergström, Farmaceutiska fakulteten
Christel Bergström, Farmaceutiska fakulteten

The computer-based simulations will eventually also include other age groups. With the results, the team will design a palette of virtual intestinal environments that are representative of both children, adults and the elderly, a resource that is expected to be a key tool in studies of how different drugs will behave in the gut.

“Our virtual environments constitute the basis for a new research area and new working methods. But as we are still in the construction phase, we need further competences to ensure a high quality. The three-year grant that we have now received gives us space to continue the process, during which our ambition is to secure continued financing in the even longer term,” says Christel Bergström.

Facts

  • The Swedish Research Council awards the grant within the framework of the Medicine and Health 2021 call.
  • The project En datorbaserad magtarm-kanal för att förutsäga ålder och sjukdomseffekter på orala mediciner will last 2022–2024.

More information

Contact

Christel Bergström, Professor
Department of Pharmacy, Uppsala University
Christel.Bergstrom@farmaci.uu.se

text: Magnus Alsne, photo: Mikael Wallerstedt

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Last modified: 2022-03-31