Key to the development of the Organoid Technology was the discovery of LGR5+ intestinal adult stem cells by the Clevers lab. When provided with the appropriate growth factors, HUB Organoids proved to be both genetically and phenotypically stable during prolonged periods of cell culture and are amenable to all standard experimental manipulations, including middle through-put drug screen.
Because HUB Organoids can be generated from normal/healthy tissue and they maintain individual and tissue-specific characteristics, they have the potential to model viral infection diseases with relevant clinical implications such Hepatitis B (HBV), Respiratory Syncytial (RSV) and more recently Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV2). At the same time, HUB Organoids can be used as a relevant patient model in (pre-)clinical phases to test effective drug treatments for infectious diseases, from which a relevant patient model was not available before.
About the Presenter:
Sylvia F Boj received her PhD in 2006 at the University of Barcelona, Spain for her work at IDIBAPS on functional genetic analysis for deciphering the transcriptional role of MODY genes in pancreatic beta cells.
With a long term EMBO fellowship, she subsequently joined the Hubrecht Institute (Utrecht, the Netherlands) as a postdoctoral fellow. In the laboratory of Prof. Hans Clevers she first studied the role of TCF7L2 regulating metabolism. Then, she established an in vitro organoid model for human pancreatic cancers. In 2014, she moved to Hubrecht Organoid Technology (Utrecht, the Netherlands) as a group leader for Cystic Fibrosis and Cancer programs. In 2016, she was appointed as Scientific Director of HUB, with the ultimate goal of transferring scientific advances of the Organoid Technology to the development of new drugs, by interacting with pharmaceutical companies, and developing clinical trials to validate the predictive value of the Organoids for the response of patients.