Expertesa de la UB

Catalogue of Preclinical models in biomedical research

Experimental models in biomedicine, also known as preclinical models, are nowadays widely used by most R&D laboratories in universities and companies around the world. These models make possible to study a disease, a biological condition or an organic system to an extent that would be impossible to achieve in humans. Despite their limitations, there is no doubt that they offer many advantages, allowing the study of genes and therapies with high predictive values which avoid posing an initial risk to humans. The most standardized models used are those based on cell lines (in vitro and ex vivo models) and animal models (in vivo models), in which rodents are the main subjects. The use of these species is justified because they share 95% of their genes with humans. Moreover, they have a shorter life expectancy, a faster capacity to develop the disease (compare with humans) and are easy to handle thanks to their small size. The applications that preclinical models offer are many:

  • Neurobiological and behavioural studies.
  • Environmental studies: study of factors that contribute to the development of a disease.
  • Studies of the different phases and evolution of a disease.
  • Search and validation of diagnostic and prognostic markers and treatment selection.
  • Search and validation of new therapeutic targets.
  • Search and validation of new therapeutic routes.
  • Search and validation of new molecular mechanisms of action of therapeutic targets.
  • Proofs of Concept of efficacy and safety of compounds (new compounds and reformulations).

This catalogue was created with the aim of unifying the great variety of experimental models that the University of Barcelona is currently developing in the biomedical field in order to make them known both to researchers from this or other universities and, to companies and other institutions. The final goal is to be able to work together to generate knowledge about the diseases that affect our society and to be one step closer each day to finding a cure for all of them.

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