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STEMCELL Technologies Brings Groundbreaking Intestinal and Brain Organoid Culture Tools to the Global Research Community

By January 11, 2018No Comments

STEMCELL Technologies Inc. has released two product lines for organoid research that will enable scientists to create powerful models for studying human disease in the lab.

Organoids, or ‘mini-organs’, are complex, 3D, in vitro culture models that maintain key structural, developmental and functional similarities to the corresponding intact organs. These innovative models provide specific insight into development and disease mechanisms, and offer opportunities for individually tailored treatments. Although these techniques hold enormous potential, organoid culture is complex and prone to variability. STEMCELL Technologies has applied over 20 years of experience in developing specialized cell culture media to create robust, straight-forward organoid culture kits that both reduce the variability in these systems and make organoids a more accessible tool to researchers globally.

Dr. Allen Eaves, Founder and CEO of STEMCELL Technologies, explains, “The development of organoid culture techniques has expanded the limits of what scientists can accomplish in vitro. At STEMCELL, we are committed to providing tools for culturing organoids to researchers across the globe.”

The human cerebral organoid culture system published by Dr. Madeline Lancaster and Dr. Jürgen Knoblich (M. Lancaster et al. Nature, 2013) has proven to be a valuable tool for studying neurological diseases and disorders, such as Zika virus-associated microcephaly, Alzheimer’s disease, autism and Down syndrome. STEMCELL’s STEMdiff™ Cerebral Organoid Kit is based on this technology and was developed under exclusive license from the Institute of Molecular Biotechnology (IMBA) of the Austrian Academy of Sciences.

Knoblich, Deputy Scientific Director of IMBA, says “We want cerebral organoid technology to be accessible to as many researchers as possible because we believe it will lead to many scientific breakthroughs in the field of neurodegenerative and psychiatric diseases.”

The intestinal epithelial organoid culture system was pioneered by Dr. Hans Clevers and his team of researchers at the Foundation Hubrecht Organoid Technology (HUB), initiating a wave of innovation in in vitro tissue modelling. Human intestinal organoids (also known as mini-guts or enteroids) are now being used in hundreds of applications ranging from investigating cancer mechanisms and intestinal diseases to researching the microbiome and informing individualized therapies for cystic fibrosis patients. STEMCELL has partnered with HUB to develop IntestiCult™ Organoid Growth Media, making it easier for more scientists to use intestinal organoids and facilitating collaboration across institutions.

“Organoid technology is now something we can apply to improve patient care and outcomes. We are currently using intestinal organoids to identify appropriate treatments for all 1500 cystic fibrosis patients in the Netherlands” says Dr. Hans Clevers, Founding Director of HUB.

The STEMdiff™ Cerebral Organoid Kit and IntestiCult™ Organoid Growth Medium (Human) represent significant additions to the existing product offerings for neuroscience and epithelial cell research provided by STEMCELL, and mark the next step in the company’s commitment to help advance research by providing scientists with the most advanced tools.