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Organoids: Stunt Doubles for Human Organs

The pursuit of new drugs to treat and cure human diseases is one of the noblest things in our civilization. However, 6 out of 10 drugs fail during the clinical trials, making the lengthy and expensive R&D process a proverbial double-edged sword. High rates of failure are often attributed to the poor predictability of 2D cell cultures and animal models that are used to test drugs during the preclinical stage. The unreliability of these models is why researchers are turning to “mini organs” in a dish, popularly known as organoids, to better understand the effects of experimental drugs on human organs. Organoids are miniaturized 3D replicas of human organs that are created by culturing stem cells or progenitor cells in a medium simulating extracellular matrix (ECM) properties.

Organoids have numerous impactful applications, but their applicability in disease modeling is especially noteworthy. They can be used to recapitulate human pathophysiology in vitro, providing a golden opportunity to study and treat human diseases in a 3D environment. Organoids for all major organs have already been produced. For example, gastrointestinal organoid tissues, liver-on-a-chip models, and lung-on-a-chip models are made available by OcellO, Braingineering Technologies, and AlveoliX, respectively.

This organoid technology has the potential to transform the field of precision medicine. The day when a scientist will be able to completely diagnose and cure people using their simulated forms in vitro does not seem so far away. Science Exchange believes this technology can do a world of good for R&D, which is why we have established an exhaustive network of qualified providers to make organoid products and services readily available. Listed below are a few inventive organoid technologies. If you find something that interests you, click on the provided link and request more information.

1. Lung-on-a-Chip Model | AlveoliX

AlveoliX offers a human lung-on-a-chip model that mimics the biophysical microenvironment of the air-blood barrier of the human lung, including the mechanical stress of inspiration/expiration. This model is expected to best predict the effects of respiratory drug candidates in humans and, thereby, reduce the number of clinical trials.


2. Nerve-on-a-Chip | AxoSim

AxoSim offers a 3D cell-based model that mimics living tissue in both form and function by employing microengineering techniques and novel biomaterials. The Nerve-on-a-Chip™ platform facilitates the prediction of both clinical neurotoxicity and efficacy in human neurodegenerative disease models earlier in the drug development pipeline.


3. ParVivo Chips | Nortis

Nortis offers a microfluidic platform suitable for growing cells into 3D human tissues. This inventive microfluidic chip grows microscopic organ models by seeding cells into tubular voids within extracellular matrix gels.


4. OrganDOT™ Platform | BioIVT

Combining high-quality primary cultures with a robust air-liquid interface, scientists at BioIVT (formerly BioreclamationIVT) have developed the proprietary OrganDOTplatform to recapitulate tissue architecture and functionality. Established models created using this platform include pancreatic islets and the lung airway epithelium. Key advantages of this 3D microtissue platform include consistent function, longevity, and high throughput.


5. MucilAir™: 3D Human Airway Epithelia | Epithelix

Epithelix offers a unique 3D human airway epithelia reconstituted in vitro (MucilAir™). This model has potential research applications including safety testing of occupational and environmental chemicals and drug development. MucilAir™ is available from single or multiple patient donors and from different anatomical sites (e.g., nasal, tracheal, or bronchial) and for several pathologies (e.g., asthma, cystic fibrosis, allergic rhinitis, etc.).


Contact our organoid specialists at [email protected] to learn more about the most innovative organoid products and services available on Science Exchange.


Gursatya "Guru" Singh

Director of Scientific Content & Marketing

Gursatya Singh, also known as "Guru", manages the development and execution of strategic marketing initiatives to improve platform providers’ visibility and user experience. He is a true guru when it comes to helping providers better advertise their research services and providing buyers with easy access to recently commercialized external innovations. Whether working as a lab researcher, publishing scientific papers, or helping start life science startups, Guru believes in making the scientific world more collaborative and connected. Guru holds a master’s degree in biotechnology from the University of Delaware. Follow him on Twitter @Gursatya.

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