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SBME & MSL Seminar: Dr. Linda Griffith

April 14, 2021


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MSL Seminar Series - Linda Griffith

Humanizing Drug Development: From Organoids to Organs-on-Chips

Speaker: Dr. Linda Griffith – School of Engineering Professor of Teaching Innovation, Biological Engineering, and Mechanical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)


Abstract: “Mice are not little people” – a refrain becoming louder as the strengths and weaknesses of animal models of human disease become more apparent.  At the same time, three emerging approaches are headed toward integration:  powerful systems biology analysis of cell-cell and intracellular signaling networks in patient-derived samples; 3D tissue engineered models of human organ systems, often made from stem cells; and micro-fluidic and meso-fluidic devices that enable living systems to be sustained, perturbed and analyzed for weeks in culture.  This talk will highlight the integration of these rapidly moving fields to understand difficult clinical problems, with an emphasis on translating academic discoveries into practical use.  Technical challenges in modeling complex diseases with “organs on chips” approaches include the need for relatively large tissue masses and organ-organ cross talk to capture systemic effects, as well as new ways of thinking about scaling to capture multiple different functionalities from drug clearance to cytokine signaling crosstalk. Examples in gynecology, metabolic diseases and other chronic inflammatory conditions will be highlighted.


Hosted by: Dr. Peter Zandstra, Director – Michael Smith Laboratories and the School of Biomedical Engineering, UBC



Co-sponsored by: The Michael Smith Laboratories and the UBC School of Biomedical Engineering


April 14
3:00 pm - 4:00 pm




Michael Smith Laboratories
UBC School of Biomedical Engineering