Xingrui Mou, a Ph.D. candidate at Duke University, has received IFER funding from 2020-2021 for his project, "Engineered in vitro model of the human kidney for blood filtration and disease modeling." The goal of Xingrui’s project is to engineer a cell-based model of the human kidney that can mimic that organ’s blood filtration function. Given that a growing number of people are afflicted with kidney disease, a model that can mimic the structure and physiology of the human kidneys is needed. Xingrui will engineer a microfluidic device that can replicate the vascular and urinary compartments of the human kidney and will populate the device with different types of human kidney cells derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells. He will then conduct tests to examine the functionality of the engineered kidney model and use it to study kidney diseases, while providing the scientific community with an alternative that can reduce reliance on animal models in this area of research.