Three-dimensionally Reconstituted Organoid Perfectly Mimics Human Organs
Three-dimensionally Reconstituted Organoid Perfectly Mimics Human Organs
  • Reporter Han Sang-yun
  • 승인 2021.01.02 18:53
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▲Bladder tumor assembloid mimicking the histopathological feature of cancer
▲Bladder tumor assembloid mimicking the histopathological feature of cancer

 

Laboratory-grown stem cells implemented on tissues such as human organs are called organoids. These are also known as “miniature organs”. Due to their capability of reproducing the structure and function of human organs, organoids are considered as the next-generation technology for developing artificial organs and novel drugs. A research team led by Professor Shin Kunyoo (LIFE) recently developed “assembloid”, a new concept of mini-organs that can perfectly create human tissue including every cell within. The research was published in Nature on Dec. 16, 2020. Assembloid is an innovative technology for the next-generation treatment of incurable diseases including cancer.
Organoids are mini-organs that imitate human organs. However, the organoids developed so far do not mimic the mature structure of organs and therefore have fundamental limitations in that microenvironments within cannot be constructed. Furthermore, interactions between various cells necessary for human organs to function are absent. Hence, a limit was imposed on accurately modeling various incurable diseases, including cancer.
To overcome these limitations, the team reconstituted various human cells and developed assembloids which precisely mimic human organs. Assembloids are reconstituted organoids that have an organized structure consisting of epithelial cells, stromal layers, and outer muscle cells. They found that assembloids were identical to mature adult organs in terms of cell composition and gene expression at a single-cell level and that they reproduced in vivo tissue dynamics during injury induced tissue regeneration.
In addition, the team developed a patient-specific human tumor mimic called “tumour assembloid”, which perfectly mimics the pathological and physiological characteristics of human tumors from cancer patients. Using a tumor assembloid platform that allows genetic manipulation of various types of cells in the tumor tissue, the study revealed that signals from the surrounding microenvironment of the tumor determine the fluidity and dynamics of tumor cells. Such discovery enables the development of cancer cell differentiation therapy, a next-generation cancer treatment paradigm that controls the plasticity of cancer cells.


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