In addition to the Lung Tissue Biorepository, the PCOE boasts a pre-clinical research cardiopulmonary suite. The Cardiopulmonary Suite includes access to a flexivent, a state-of-the-art rodent respiratory ventilator system that allows real-time lung function assessment in rodents. This system is capable of measuring lung function changes in experimental models of disease and is extremely useful for drug discovery applications to test the efficacy of new drugs to treat asthma, emphysema and lung fibrosis. The center also has access to the forced expiratory volume module which is able to mimic clinical spirometry readouts in experimental models. These readouts include Forced Expired Volume (FEV) and Forced Vital Capacity (FVC) which are commonly used in the clinic, highlighting the strength in translational research at the PCOE.
The center also includes a surgical setup to measure pulmonary hemodynamics using the AD Instruments module and Millar catheters. This set-up allows for in vivo assessment of right and left heart pressure and volume metrics, which are essential to study the pathophysiological mechanisms in pulmonary hypertension and to test new therapies. We have also purchased a state-of-the-art organ bath to measure vascular contractility and relaxation from isolated pulmonary vessels from lung explants or experimental models of disease. This pre-clinical suite is supported by access to several biological hoods and cell incubators to facilitate in vitro experiments to identify novel mechanisms of disease.
The PCOE also has access to several fluorescent microscopes including a Leica DM4000 stereo microscope and associated digital cameras (DFX310 and DFC3000G) and a semi-automated Keyence Digital Microscope to assist in image acquisition and quantification.