Oncology drug development

When the predictability of the assay is a matter of life or death. Directly measure the cell-killing effects of potentially apoptotic antibodies or compounds.

Direct monitoring of potency and mechanism of action

Direct metabolic readout by calScreener™ provides a true evaluation of cell survival and cell death kinetics.

Assays can easily be adapted to test both cell cultures, tissue samples, as well as synthetic 3-D cell cultures. calScreener™ enables seamless monitoring from 2D to 3D cell cultures to tissue samples in the same assay type environment.

Improved anti-cancer drug screening

  • Reliable phenotypic read-out of the drug efficacy
  • Differentiation between antiproliferative, cytostatic or cytotoxic effect
  • Differentiation between apoptotic and necrotic effect
  • Easy screening of combinations of compounds
  • 2D, 3D and tissue cultures and with any culture media
  • Non-destructive technology, allowing post-experimental analysis

Biologically relevant environment

A key problem in oncology drug development is to reproduce the effect of compounds first evaluated in 2D cellular in vitro models when tested in 3D and animal models. The calScreener™ assay can help in the development of more effective drugs or combination of those by enabling a more physiologically relevant environment.

The phenotype cell activity assay add an enormous amount of information on drug action through precise measurements of cell survival in 2D cell culture, 3D culture or a patient biopsy.

The calScreener™ system provides the sensitivity to measure metabolic activity on small and intact tissue biopsies – something not available with other technologies. The continuous readout is independent of sample morphology and not limited by labeling access or end point assay drawbacks.

Measure the effect of experimental drugs in a biopsy

The calScreener has been used to measure the efficiency of different experimental drugs in a biopsy of a non-responsive patient

The metabolic activity of intact tumors monitored over time using different experimental drugs has been evaluated in calScreener™. By measuring the phenotype response in real–time of tumor biopsies, it was possible to select the most active novel compound for the patient, not previously responding to regular treatment.

Foundations for personalized medicine

The anticancer treatment choice is based on the type of tumor, the disease state, and the histology. The calScreener™ can be used on patient biopsies for phenotypic information of drug treatment response to predict the most appropriate treatment or combination for each patient.

calScreener is the ideal technology to achieve individualization of drug therapy and with that decrease the number of non-responders


Isothermal microcalorimetry is a label-free assay that allows monitoring of enzymatic and metabolic activities. The technique has strengths, but most instruments have a low throughput, which has limited their use for bioassays. Here, an isothermal microcalorimeter, equipped with a vessel holder similar to a 48-well plate, was used. The increased throughput of this microcalorimeter makes it valuable for biomedical and pharmaceutical applications. Our results show that the sensitivity of the instrument allows the detection of 3 × 10(4) bacteria per vial. Growth of P. mirabilis in Luria Broth medium was detected between 2 and 9 h with decreasing inoculum. The culture released 2.1J with a maximum thermal power of 76 μW. The growth rate calculated using calorimetric and spectrophotometric data were 0.60 and 0.57 h(-1) , respectively. Additional insight on protease activities of P. mirabilis matching the last peak in heat production could be gathered as well. Growth of tumor microtissues releasing a maximum thermal power of 2.1 μW was also monitored and corresponds to a diameter increase of the microtissues from ca. 100 to 428 μm. This opens new research avenues in cancer research, diagnostics, and development of new antitumor drugs. For parasitic worms, the technique allows assessment of parasite survival using motor and metabolic activities even with a single worm.

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