The University of Antwerp has developed a validated gastrointestinal models for visceral pain which can be used for in vivo proof of concept of new lead compounds. Pharmaceutical companies looking to test a preclinical candidate for further development in visceral pain-related pathologies can benefit from this established expertise.
Visceral pain or hypersensitivity is a well-known problem in e.g. the irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Currently no therapeutic strategies are available that work through normalizing the visceral pain sensation. The presence of huge unmet needs is a result of the lack of a significant number of drugs approved by the FDA. For the treatment of IBS there are only four approved medications on the market: two 5-HT3 antagonists, linaclotide and lubiprostone. The use of off-label drugs is also a common practice but causes several adverse side effects.
UAntwerp: The laboratory of Gastroenterology and Hepatology (part of LEMP, www.uantwerpen.be/lemp) has a validated in house rat model of visceral pain to evaluate new lead compounds. In this IBS model (postinflammatory rat model) the inflammation has endoscopically subsided and the presence of visceral pain is clearly established. Visceral sensitivity is measured via the visceromotorresponse (VMR) to a colorectal distension.An in vivo proof of concept has already been obtained with this model, using an in-house lead compound.
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University of Antwerp
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