The Use of Stem Cell-Derived Organoids in Disease Modeling: An Update

Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Jul 17;22(14):7667. doi: 10.3390/ijms22147667.


Organoids represent one of the most important advancements in the field of stem cells during the past decade. They are three-dimensional in vitro culturing models that originate from self-organizing stem cells and can mimic the in vivo structural and functional specificities of body organs. Organoids have been established from multiple adult tissues as well as pluripotent stem cells and have recently become a powerful tool for studying development and diseases in vitro, drug screening, and host-microbe interaction. The use of stem cells-that have self-renewal capacity to proliferate and differentiate into specialized cell types-for organoids culturing represents a major advancement in biomedical research. Indeed, this new technology has a great potential to be used in a multitude of fields, including cancer research, hereditary and infectious diseases. Nevertheless, organoid culturing is still rife with many challenges, not limited to being costly and time consuming, having variable rates of efficiency in generation and maintenance, genetic stability, and clinical applications. In this review, we aim to provide a synopsis of pluripotent stem cell-derived organoids and their use for disease modeling and other clinical applications.

Keywords: 3D culturing; disease modeling; embryonic stem cells; organoids; pluripotent stem cells.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Drug Evaluation, Preclinical / methods*
  • Humans
  • Models, Biological
  • Organ Culture Techniques / methods*
  • Organoids / cytology*
  • Organoids / drug effects
  • Organoids / metabolism
  • Pluripotent Stem Cells / cytology*
  • Pluripotent Stem Cells / drug effects
  • Pluripotent Stem Cells / metabolism