Rianú: Multi-tissue tracking software for increased throughput of engineered cardiac tissue screening

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Background: The field of tissue engineering has provided valuable three-dimensional species-specific models of the human myocardium in the form of human Engineered Cardiac Tissues (hECTs) and similar constructs. However, hECT systems are often bottlenecked by a lack of openly available software that can collect data from multiple tissues at a time, even in multi-tissue bioreactors, which limits throughput in phenotypic and therapeutic screening applications. Methods: We developed Rianú, an open-source web application capable of simultaneously tracking multiple hECTs on flexible end-posts. This software is operating system agnostic and deployable on a remote server, accessible via a web browser with no local hardware or software requirements. The software incorporates object-tracking capabilities for multiple objects simultaneously, an algorithm for twitch tracing analysis and contractile force calculation, and a data compilation system for comparative analysis within and amongst groups. Validation tests were performed using in-silico and in-vitro experiments for comparison with established methods and interventions. Results: Rianú was able to detect the displacement of the flexible end-posts with a sub-pixel sensitivity of 0.555 px/post (minimum increment in post displacement) and a lower limit of 1.665 px/post (minimum post displacement). Compared to our established reference for contractility assessment, Rianú had a high correlation for all parameters analyzed (ranging from R2=0.7514 to R2=0.9695), demonstrating its high accuracy and reliability. Conclusions: Rianú provides simultaneous tracking of multiple hECTs, expediting the recording and analysis processes, and simplifies time-based intervention studies. It also allows data collection from different formats and has scale-up capabilities proportional to the number of tissues per field of view. These capabilities will enhance throughput of hECTs and similar assays for in-vitro analysis in disease modeling and drug screening applications.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100107
JournalComputer Methods and Programs in Biomedicine Update
StatePublished - Jan 2023


  • Cardiac muscle function
  • Contractility analysis
  • Drug screening
  • Human engineered cardiac tissues
  • Object tracking
  • Tissue engineering


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