InSphero Launches Enhanced Ultra-low Attachment Plate for Scaffold-free 3D Cell Culture

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GravityTRAP™ ULA Plate design simplifies medium exchange and improves imaging during spheroid production and culture.

GravityTRAP™ ULA Plate

The GravityTRAP™ ULA Plate ...provides significant advantages over existing ultra-low attachment spheroid plates, including simplified medium exchange and improved imaging.

InSphero AG, the leading provider of scaffold-free 3D microtissues, cell culture technology, and 3D-focused contract research testing, announced today the release of their new GravityTRAP™ Ultra-low Attachment (ULA) Plate. The automation-compatible 96-well ULA format expands InSphero’s portfolio of tissue culture platforms for scaffold-free 3D cell culture, offering a low-cost, enhanced ULA plate ideal for production of 3D tumor microtissues derived from tumor cell lines, or to screen for the propensity of cells to form spheroids in a low-attachment environment.

The GravityTRAP™ ULA Plate includes wells specially coated to prevent attachment and monolayer growth of cells, and provides significant advantages over existing ultra-low attachment spheroid plates, including simplified medium exchange and improved imaging. Each well incorporates a SureExchange™ tapered ledge design that simplifies the process of changing growth medium during long term culture or compound dosing, and protects spheroids from disruption or accidental aspiration. The narrow (1 mm diameter) growth chamber in each well features a flat bottom, eliminating focal distortion that can complicate imaging in round-bottom ULA plates. The narrow chamber provides the necessary concentration of cells required to promote formation of a single microtissue per well, while making it easier to locate and image even small (<100 μm diameter) spheroids.

Users of InSphero’s GravityPLUS™ hanging drop system will likely be familiar with the GravityTRAP™ ULA Plate, as it already serves as the long-term culture and assay plate provided with the patented hanging drop system. Dr. Simon Messner, Product Manager at InSphero, notes offering the GravityTRAP™ ULA Plate as a stand-alone platform offers a cost-effective option for researchers looking to move their cell culture into 3D, or who may currently be experiencing the limitations of existing ultra-low attachment plates. “We recommend the GravityTRAP™ ULA Plate as a first-line option for testing or confirming the spheroid-forming capacity of cells, particularly tumor cell lines, as they may not require the improved oxygenation and complete elimination of cell-surface interaction afforded by the hanging drop technique to form spheroids. The GravityPLUS™ system is still the platform of choice for production of more complex 3D microtissues, such as those derived from patient- or animal-derived (primary) cells ormulti-cell type co-culture models.”

InSphero CEO and co-founder Dr. Jan Lichtenberg states the benefits of the new platform extend beyond its design features. “With the GravityTRAP™ ULA Plate and GravityPLUS™ system, researchers have not only two reliable scaffold-free platforms, but also the confidence of purchasing their technology from a company with extensive 3D cell culture experience and know-how. This includes specially formulated growth medium to promote spheroid formation or long-term culture maintenance, 3D-optimized protocols to help extract the most data, and custom model development and compound screening through our 3D InSight™ Services.”

To find out more about the benefits of scaffold-free 3D cell culture, or to learn more about InSphero visit

About InSphero

InSphero is the world’s leading supplier of organotypic, biologically relevant in vitro 3D microtissues for highly predictive drug testing. The company, headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, with subsidiaries in the USA and in Germany, currently counts all of the top 15 global pharmaceutical and cosmetics companies as customers. InSphero 3D Insight™ Microtissues enable more biologically relevant in vitro applications in efficacy and toxicology. The spin-off company of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich and the University Zurich has been recognized for its scientific and commercial achievements with a number of national and international awards, including being named the #1 Swiss Startup and ACES Award Winner for 2014. InSphero is certified to the ISO 9001:2008 standard for its Quality Management System.

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Randy Strube
InSphero AG
+1 800-779-7558 Ext: 102
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Jan Lichtenberg
InSphero AG
+41 44 515 0490
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