BASF Care Creations® division and the CTIBIOTECH – Cell Therapy Research Institute – have announced the development of the first 3D bioprinted skin models, including immune macrophages. Reconstructed tissue models will form the basis for bioactive development and testing for skin care applications.

Using CTIBiotech’s 3D bioprinting technology will enable BASF scientists to expand their portfolio of 3D bioprinted skin models. The technology will provide a powerful platform for skin care researchers who want to study macrophage function in fully reconstructed skin.

Macrophages constantly monitor the skin’s microenvironment for signs of cell stress, tissue damage or infection. They are essential for closing wounds and fully regenerating the tissue. To maintain skin homeostasis, macrophages have a high degree of plasticity that promotes or suppresses inflammation.

“Compared to in vitro methods, the 3D bioprinted immune skin developed by CTIBiotech will allow for a more consistent analysis of human physiology and immune function of macrophages,” says Sébastien Cadau, BASF’s 3D tissue engineering expert. “Like this, technology will help us accelerate the development of innovative and highly reliable ingredients for the skin care market. Our understanding of immunocompetent 3D skin will support the development and testing of advanced cosmetic bioactive for skin care applications. ”

BASF and CTIBiotech began cooperation as early as 2011. In 2015, research partners began working with 3D tissue models for the development and testing of bioactive skin care applications. In 2018 they released the first results: the experts showed both the ex vivo production of physiological fat in a long-term culture of a 3D human sebaceous gland model, and the regulation of this fat production through active ingredients.

“CTIBiotech and BASF have a long history of collaborating on innovative human skin models for advanced human skin care,” says Colin McGUCKIN, Chief Scientific Director at CTIBiotech. “CTIBiotech has a team of experts in human tissue engineering with 3D Bioprint technology from around the world that will strengthen the success of this partnership also in the future.”