Costa, J., R. Mackay, S.-C. de Aguiar Greca, A. Corti, E. Silva, E. Karteris and A. Ahluwalia (2021)
Modeling the physiology of the human placenta is still a challenge, despite the great number of scientific advancements made in the field. Animal models cannot fully replicate the structure and function of the human placenta and pose ethical and financial hurdles. In addition, increasingly stricter animal welfare legislation worldwide is incentivizing the use of 3R (reduction, refinement, replacement) practices. What efforts have been made to develop alternative models for the placenta so far? How effective are they? How can we improve them to make them more predictive of human pathophysiology? To address these questions, this review aims at presenting and discussing the current models used to study phenomena at the placenta level: in vivo, ex vivo, in vitro and in silico. We describe the main achievements and opportunities for improvement of each type of model and critically assess their individual and collective impact on the pursuit of predictive studies of the placenta in line with the 3Rs and European legislation.
Costa, J., R. Mackay, S.-C. de Aguiar Greca, A. Corti, E. Silva, E. Karteris and A. Ahluwalia (2021). "The Role of the 3Rs for Understanding and Modeling the Human Placenta." Journal of Clinical Medicine 10(15).