Investigating the promising future of organoids

Posted: 29 April 2024 | | No comments yet

In this episode, we discuss the current advantages and limitations of using organoids, as well as where the field is heading.

In this podcast episode, titled ‘Investigating the promising future of organoids’, we will be discussing the ways in which organoids are being used to study diseases and improve drug development. We explore the specific preclinical models organoids are replacing, the current limitations of organoids and how to overcome these, as well as where the field is heading. 

This conversation features Dr Radhika Menon, Senior Scientist of Neurobiology at Ncardia, Dr Etienne De Braekeleer, Senior Research Scientist at AstraZeneca, and Dr Paige Vinson, Director of High Throughput Screening at Southern Research.

Key discussion points:

  • The ways in which organoids contribute to our understanding of disease mechanisms, and how this understanding informs the development of novel therapeutics
  • How researchers establish the reproducibility and scalability of organoid-based preclinical studies, particularly when considering variations in organoid culture conditions and patient-specific factors
  • Recent breakthroughs and applications of organoids in preclinical studies

This podcast is in association with Molecular Devices. With its innovative life science technology, Molecular Devices makes scientific breakthroughs possible for academic, pharmaceutical, government and biotech customers. Head to moleculardevices.com to find out more.

About the speakers

Dr Radhika Menon, Senior Scientist of Neurobiology at Ncardia

Radhika Menon, PhD is a Senior Scientist at Ncardia, Leiden. In her current position, she leads projects involving human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and various iPSC-derived cell types. She started her scientific career as a Junior Researcher in India where she worked on human iPSCs and (embryonic stem cells) ESCs and a cellular model for Alzheimer’s Disease. She received her PhD in Translational Neuroscience from the Johannes Gutenberg University, Mainz, Germany, working under the supervision of Professor Marisa Karow and Professor Benedikt Berninger. Her PhD project involved the establishment and characterization of an iPSC-derived brain organoid model to study a neurodevelopmental disorder (Opitz Syndrome). Her motivation to do impactful work in the fields of disease modelling, drug development and patient care guided her move to industry to pursue translational research. She moved to the Netherlands to join Mimetas, an organ-on-a-chip company, where she worked with human neuronal, cancer and intestinal biology systems. Dr Menon’s expertise in cellular differentiation (2D & 3D) and disease modelling in various therapeutic areas is leveraged at Ncardia for cell manufacture and model development services.

Dr Paige Vinson, Director of High Throughput Screening at Southern Research

Paige Vinson, PhD leads a team of scientists in the Southern Research High-Throughput Screening Center in Birmingham, Alabama, where she serves as Director. She earned her PhD in Analytical Chemistry with a focus in Neuroscience from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia followed by postdoctoral training in Biochemistry at Emory.

Early in her professional career, she gained experience in providing high-throughput drug discovery solutions to researchers in both academia and industry as part of the laboratory automation business unit at Thermo Fisher Scientific. Following this role, Vinson held a research faculty position at Vanderbilt University where she spent twelve years participating in team science, including drug discovery efforts, both as director of HTS and in the molecular pharmacology group of the Warren Center for Neuroscience Drug Discovery.

An ongoing theme in Vinson’s career is the bridging of basic research into a drug discovery space through novel approaches in assay development, implementation, and automation including more challenging translational in vitro models. In her current role at Southern Research, Vinson enjoys combining her passions for data-driven approaches and team science to advance projects toward the clinic.

Dr Etienne De Braekeleer, Senior Research Scientist at AstraZeneca