Skip main navigation

Inflammatory Bowel Disease Assays


If you are developing novel compounds for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), REPROCELL is your ideal partner for human tissue research. By combining drug efficacy (pharmacology) data from our ex vivo assays with a full medical history from each donor, we can provide evidence that your compound is likely to translate to clinically useful therapies. Moreover, by combining our pharmacology data with genomics, transcriptomics, pathology reports, and medical histories, we can provide an early understanding of interpatient variations in drug responses as part of a precision medicine strategy. We also offer services to analyze tissues from animal models of IBD, either standalone or as cross-species comparisons to human IBD tissues. 


Diagram showing a typical set-up for our IBD organoculture assay. 

Anti-inflammatory drug effects in IBD

Using our IBD organoculture model, we can investigate the anti-inflammatory effects of your test drugs to treat Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis. As inflammation is a defining feature of IBD, the tissue resections (ileum or colon) are received residual to surgery with inflamed areas of the intestine determined by a pathologist.

All tissues are rapidly transported to Reprocell as fresh living tissues 24/7 for processing at our laboratories in the USA or UK.  Similar experiments can be conducted in non-human preclinical models of IBD to allow cross-species comparisons. The resultant organocultures can be exposed to a range of test agents for up to 24 hours:

  • More than 40 inflammatory mediators can be measured
  • Data from healthy, Crohn’s, and ulcerative colitis patients can be compared
  • Cross-species comparison studies, e.g. with other preclinical models of IBD
  • Tissue cytokine profiles correlate well with literature from clinical studies
  • End-point analysis includes multiplex ELISA/Luminex assay,  gene expression (RT-PCR), or immunohistochemistry (IHC)

IBD tissue
A fresh gut explant from an IBD patient.


End-point analysis being performed in our Glasgow laboratory.

Efficacy of IBD therapies in GI tissues from IBD patients:
IBD culture study in Crohn’s or ulcerative colitis

This assay uses gut biopsies from IBD donors to assess the anti-inflammatory effects of your test articles.

Drug permeability in IBD tissues 

Drug permeability of therapies intended for use in patients with IBD can be assessed in human fresh IBD tissues using our Ussing Chamber methodology. Where artificial permeability models often use Caco-2 cell lines, which don't reflect the normal expression of enzymes and transporters, we use human fresh gastrointestinal (GI) mucosa from IBD patients to determine drug bioavailability. If you are primarily interested in investigating ion channel function and drug metabolism across all patients, not only those with IBD, we can achieve this using  GI tissues from healthy donors. Endpoints that can be measured in this translational model include:

  • In vitro permeability of drug compounds (Papp)
  • Phase I and II metabolism (e.g. CYP3A4 mediated metabolism of drugs)
  • Short-circuit current (Isc), potential difference (PD), and transepithelial electrical resistance (TEER)


A section of fresh intestinal tissue from a patient with IBD.

Permeability in IBD tissues:
IBD permeability model

This model uses intact gut mucosa from IBD donors to assess the bioavailability and permeability of your test articles.

Permeability in healthy intestine:
Heathy GI permeability model

This model uses intact gut mucosa from healthy donors to assess the bio-availability and permeability of your test articles.

Ion-channel function in GI tissues:
Healthy GI ion-channel model

This assay uses intact gut mucosa from healthy donors to assess the effects of your test article on ion-channel function.

GI metabolism in healthy intestine:
Healthy GI metabolism model

This assay uses intact gut mucosa from healthy donors to investigate the effects of your test article on Phase1 and Phase 2 metabolic enzymes.

Making an inquiry

Have a question about our Human IBD Assays? Fill in the form below to speak with one of our experts.