In Vivo

Aragen’s experienced team investigates different animal protocols, optimizing planning and experimental design to ensure clients get the most out of their in vivo studies. Our excellent infrastructure and agile operational model enables the quick allocation of appropriate space with technical staff to accelerate research programs. We provide specialized platforms and technical expertise, including ex vivo/in vitro testing and histological preparations. In addition to disease models in a multitude of therapeutic areas, we also undertake non-GLP pharmacokinetic (PK), pharmacodynamic (PD), and toxicology screens.

We work out of a state-of-the-art 15,000 sq ft facility dedicated to in vivo pharmacology, ex vivo and in vitro cell based analysis. These resources, combined with our specialization in animal handling and small animal procedures, ensure successful outcomes of preclinical studies.

Aragen is fully accredited by the Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care (AAALAC). Our in vivo pharmacology consists of non-GLP studies performed exclusively in rodent models. We have a long tradition in the humane and proper use of laboratory research animals for biological and biomedical research. The Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) serves as an independent oversight committee responsible for monitoring all associated animal care and use at Aragen. Accrediting agencies like the USDA and the Public Health Service/National Institutes of Health/Office of Lab Animal Welfare (OLAW) monitor the IACUC’s operations. Aragen also holds a Controlled Substance License from the US Department of Justice/Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

Fibrosis Models

Aragen has a portfolio of in vivo fibrosis models and world class expertise to support clients in the development of anti-fibrotic therapeutic or prophylactic candidates. In hundreds of studies over the course of more than a decade, we have evaluated the efficacy of test compounds spanning several modalities (small molecules, biologics, RNA therapeutics, exosomes etc.) on a variety of assay platforms, ultimately resulting in INDs for our clients.

Lung Fibrosis

  • Bleomycin-induced lung fibrosis
  • Silica-induced lung fibrosis
  • Scleroderma model/systemic sclerosis

Liver Fibrosis

  • CCL4-induced liver fibrosis
  • TAA-induced liver fibrosis
  • CDAHFD-induced NASH and liver fibrosis
  • Western diet+CCl4-induced NASH and liver fibrosis
  • Amylin diet-induced NASH model

Skin Fibrosis

  • Scleroderma model/systemic sclerosis

Infectious Disease

Aragen experts design and manage infectious disease programs that maximize a drug candidate’s probability of success. Our team’s extensive experience results in a thorough understanding of infectious disease modeling, allowing clients to creatively test compound activity, design new delivery mechanisms, and explore novel vaccine strategies for a variety of infectious diseases.

Infectious Disease Models

  • Clostridium difficile-associated diarrhoea model in hamsters and mice
  • Mouse cytomegalovirus (mCMV)
  • Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) in mice and cotton rats
  • Immunogenicity studies to evaluate vaccine candidates
  • Mouse coronavirus MV-A59
  • Citrobacter-induced colitis in mice

Pseudovirus System for SARS-CoV-2

The vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV)-based pseudovirus system incorporating the Spike protein from SARS-CoV-2 is a useful tool for the analysis of serum from vaccine studies, monoclonal antibodies or therapeutics that impact the entry of SARS-CoV-2 into cells. In this system the VSV genome has been modified to eliminate the expression of its attachment/fusion protein (G protein). The attachment/fusion proteins from heterologous viruses can then be expressed from a plasmid during an infection with the modified VSV. The emerging virus particles contain a functional SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein on the surface of the VSV. This system can be quickly updated with emerging original SARS-COV-2 as well as the variants on the Spike protein. Experts in virology perform these assays in BSL2 laboratories.

Oncology Models

Aragen offers a diverse range of oncology disease models and services to customize study designs for specific projects. These include human xenograft tumor models as well as the more complex sub-renal capsule, patient-derived xenograft (PDX), and syngeneic tumor models.

Human Tumor Xenograft Models
Tissue TypeHuman Cell Line
Leukemia lymphomaDaudi
Burkitt’s lymphomaRaji, Raji-Luc-GFP
Acute myeloid leukemiaKasumi-1
B cell leukemiaNALM6, SUDHL-10
Multiple myelomaKG-1, NCI-H929, U266, MM.1s, RPMI-8226
Colon adenocarcinomaHT-29, HCT-116, HCT-116 Luc-GFP, Colo 205, SW480
Lung (NSCLC)A549, NCI-H226, NCI-H1299, NCI-H358, NCI-H1944, A549-Luc-GFP
Lung anaplastic carcinomaCalu-6
Lung adenocarcinomaNCI-H1573, NCI-H292
Renal cell carcinomaCaki-1, 786-O
Hepatocellular carcinomaHep G2, Hep 3B
Cervical carcinomaFaDu
Pancreatic cancerBxPC-3, BxPC-3-Luc-GFP, Mia Paca-2-Luc
Ovarian cancerSKOV-3, SKOV-3-Luc, OVCAR-3
Prostate cancerLNCaP, LNCaP-Luc, 22rv.1
Breast cancerMDA-MB-468, MDA-MB-231, MDA-MB-231-Luc, MCF-7, MCF-7 Luc, BT-474
Syngeneic Tumor Models
Tumor OriginMurine Cell Line
Breast4T1, 4T1-Luc, EMT-6
ColonMC-38, CT-26
MelanomaB16-F10, B6-F1
ThymomaEL4, E.G7
Additional Models
  • Lung metastasis model
  • Orthotopic models of breast, kidney
  • Subrenal capsule assay
  • Vaccine model

Immunology & Inflammation Models

Our preclinical research in immunology and inflammation focuses on arthritis and autoimmunity. Aragen scientists have expertise in preclinical investigations of the joints and lung functions in vivo, including bronchoalveolar lavage, cytology, immunohistochemistry, and analysis of biochemical, immunological and molecular parameters. Strong collaborations with various academic, governmental and industrial laboratories have enabled the development of several experimental models of immunology and inflammatory diseases.


  • Collagen-induced arthritis: DBA/1 mice, Lewis rats
  • Adjuvant-induced arthritis: rats

Inflammatory Bowel Disease

  • DSS-induced IBD model in mice


  • Delayed-type hypersensitivity in mice
  • Anaphylaxis model in mice
  • Endotoxemia models in mice and rats
  • Peritonitis in mice and rats
  • Psoriasis in mice
  • Citrobacter-induced colitis in mice
  • AOM/DSS model of colitis associated cancer


  • EAE model: SJL mouse, Lewis rats
  • Lupus: NZBxNZW F1 mouse, MRL/LPR

Lung Disease

  • Asthma
  • Acute lung injury models


  • Type 1 diabetes in mice

Respiratory Models

Combining years of experience in the development of respiratory disease therapeutics with the latest tools and assays, we help accelerate biotherapeutic or small molecule drug development. Aragen’s validated rodent models enable the evaluation of the potential efficacy of novel asthma, anti-inflammatory, anti-fibrotic and bronchodilator agents targeting lung fibrosis.

Asthma Models

Our rodent asthma models include induction by ova or other allergens (cedar pollen, dust mote antigen). Models can range from mild to severe disease, to evaluate a range of treatment options.

  • Whole Body Plethysmograph (WBP)
    – Airway hyper responsiveness
    – Respiratory rate
    – PenH
  • FlexiVent Lung Functional Analysis
    – Resistance
    – Compliance
    – Elastance
  • Abbott iSTAT
    – Blood glass measurement to monitor hypoxia-related symptoms
  • FlexiVent Lung Functional Analysis
    – Detection of structures that contain high concentrations of carbohydrate macromolecules (eg. glycogen, glycoprotein, proteoglycan) typically found in mucus
  • Serum and Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid Analysis
    – Antigen-specific IgE and IgA levels
    – Cytokines levels
RSV Models

Rodent models that test efficacy and safety in preclinical studies provide a critical component to the development of anti-RSV antibodies, small molecules and vaccines.

Lipopolysaccharide/ Zymosan-induced Acute Lung Injury Model

A well characterized ALI model induced by combined administration of LPS and Zymosan, with detailed end results of bronchoalveolar lavage infiltrate, cytokine analysis, hypoxia measurements and histology with capability of lung function analysis.

Bleomycin-induced Lung Fibrosis

Bleomycin induction causes quick inflammatory and fibrotic reactions in rodent lungs, successfully replicating many of the pathological characteristics associated with IPF, including abnormal deposition and accumulation of collagen in lung tissue.

Silica-induced Lung Fibrosis

A rodent model induced by the administration of crystalline silico dioxide (or silica) displays many pathophysiological features of chronic inflammation and pulmonary fibrosis.

Other Models

  • PK and tox screening studies
  • Pericarotid collar implantation model for localized atherosclerosis in mice
  • Thrombosis model: ferric chloride-induced arterial thrombosis in mice
  • Angiogenesis models: Matrigel plug assay, Trevigen implants in mice
  • Wound healing model: excisional and incisional models in normal and diabetic mice
  • Musculoskeletal syndrome (MSS) model in rats
  • Osteochondral cartilage repair model
  • Custom models of disease
  • RSV virus production for clients
  • Hybridoma development
  • Immune cell differential analysis
  • CBC differential and serum/plasma/urine chemistry analysis
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Protein analysis
  • Blood gas and lactate measurements from rodent arterial and venous blood