January 28, 2017

Organovo bioprinting human tissue for drug testing and within 6 years for implanting human livers

Organovo designs and create functional human tissues using our proprietary three-dimensional bioprinting technology. Their goal is to build living human tissues that are proven to function like native tissues. With reproducible 3D tissues that accurately represent human biology, they are enabling ground-breaking therapies by:

  • Partnering with biopharmaceutical companies and academic medical centers to design, build, and validate more predictive in vitro tissues for disease modeling and toxicology.
  • Giving researchers something they have never had before – the opportunity to test drugs on functional human tissues before ever administering the drug to a living person; bridging the gulf between preclinical testing and clinical trials.
  • Creating functional, three-dimensional tissues that can be implanted or delivered into the human body to repair or replace damaged or diseased tissues.
Bioprinting is automated fabrication of a tissue through the spatially controlled deposition of cells and/or cell-containing materials in defined, user-controlled geometric patterns, wherein the resulting multi-cellular tissue is viable, three-dimensional and mimics key aspects of native tissue architecture and / or function. Organovo finished tissues are scaffold free, comprised only of relevant tissue cell types and the extracellular matrix the cells produce

Organovo has advance work on bioprinting skin and liver and just started a partnership for kidneys.

Organovo announced a collaboration with Professor Melissa Little and the Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, The Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne, Australia to develop an architecturally correct kidney for potential therapeutic applications. The collaboration has been made possible by a generous gift from the Methuselah Foundation (“Methuselah”) as part of its ongoing University 3D Bioprinter Program.

“Partnerships with world-class institutions can accelerate groundbreaking work in finding cures for critical unmet disease needs and the development of implantable therapeutic tissues," said Keith Murphy, CEO, Organovo. “This collaboration with Professor Little’s lab is another important step in this direction. With the devoted and ongoing support of the Methuselah Foundation, leading researchers are able to leverage Organovo’s powerful technology platform to achieve significant breakthroughs.”

“We have developed an approach for recreating human kidney tissue from stem cells,” said Professor Melissa Little, Theme Director of Cell Biology at Murdoch Childrens Research Institute. “Using Organovo’s bioprinter will give us the opportunity to bioprint these cells into a more accurate model of the kidney. While initially important for modelling disease and screening drugs, we hope that this is also the first step towards regenerative medicine for kidney disease. We are very grateful to Organovo and the Methuselah Foundation for this generous support, which will enable us to advance our research with the first Organovo bioprinter in the southern hemisphere.”

Under Methuselah Foundation's University 3D Bioprinter Program, Methuselah is donating at least $500,000 in direct funding to be divided among several institutions for Organovo bioprinter research projects. This funding will cover budgeted bioprinter costs and key aspects of project execution.

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