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In vitro sensing technology


To stop using animals to test medicines, for example, we must embrace technology as an alternative. To this end, the available technology must be accessible and user-friendly. Locsense (which stands for 'lab on a chip sensing') develops in vitro sensing technology, with which the effect of medicines or cosmetics can be measured on cultured skin cells. Susan Roelofs, CEO of the MedTech company, explains how it works and how she wants to optimize healthcare.

Locsense's method has many advantages over the traditional way of reading cells. Susan says: “We use an electrical method. The advantage of this is that you don’t have to put the sample under the microscope, which is often the case now. Because by doing so, you remove the sample from the controlled environment, which gives a distorted image. You cannot scan intermediately with that method. With our technology, you can measure the quality of the cells much more reproducibly. This saves a lot of time, is not destructive to your sample so you can track it over time, and it prevents cross-contamination because you reduce the number of human actions. This technique can be applied to many cell types, including skin, lung, and intestinal cells. The great thing is that you can leave the cells in the incubator, so the environment is always constant and controlled. This means your measurements are much more accurate.”

Strong MedTech Ecosystem

Susan knew from an early age that she wanted to be an entrepreneur. She says: “If you want to do business, you find a way to do so. During my PhD research at the University of Twente, I expressed the ambition to become an entrepreneur, partly as a result of winning the Marina van Damme grant. This came my way by talking to my supervisor, among others. So it helps to express what you want. When you discuss your ideas, people know what you want and can help you further. That's why I love being in Twente. For example, we are located in a Demcon building, and we have good connections with the university, the TechMed Center, and other innovative companies. This ecosystem helps us to grow into a healthy company with an extensive product portfolio for the food industry and pharmaceuticals, among others.”

Personalized treatment methods

Locsense is well on its way to realizing that vision. Susan: “We have launched several versions of our product and won great projects. In addition, we see a lot of interest from the market, which has resulted in a large install base. What we have now is very nice, so I want to expand it with a diverse and talented team. As our company grows, we can better understand disease mechanisms, allowing us to develop better treatment methods. In the very long term, personalized treatments will even become possible. That would have a huge impact on the medical world. That is why we also work closely with academic hospitals to accelerate that development. In any case, the in vitro sector is increasing enormously because people want to eliminate animal testing. So there is a lot of potential, which makes it interesting to work on.

"As our company grows, we can ensure we understand disease mechanisms better."

Susan Roelofs

CEO Locsense

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Locsense (which stands for 'lab on a chip sensing') develops in vitro sensing technology, with which the effect of medicines or cosmetics can be measured on cultured skin cells.

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