Innovative tools for studying inflammation in healthy subjects


Inflammation is a primary pathogenic pathway in a wide range of diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, cardiovascular disease, and neuropsychiatric disorders. To study the effect of compounds that target inflammatory pathways in the early phases of drug development, CHDR has developed a series of in vivo, ex vivo, and in vitro tools to induce inflammation in healthy subjects and cells. These tools – known as LPS (lipopolysaccharide) challenges – provide researchers with a robust and safe way to test anti-inflammatory compounds under controlled conditions, before moving on to testing in patients.

The LPS challenge at a glance

The in vitro LPS challenge uses whole blood obtained from a healthy subject. In the test tube, this blood is mixed with LPS, triggering an inflammatory response in the white blood cells. The test compound can be added to the blood sample either before or after the LPS challenge, and the effect on the LPS-induced inflammatory response is measured over time.

In the ex vivo challenge, the test compound is administered to the subject, after which blood is drawn and stimulated with LPS challenge as described above.

In the in vivo challenge, healthy volunteers receive a safe dose of LPS to induce a mild systemic inflammatory response that is monitored carefully. The effect of the test compound is then measured in the subjects.