Engineering Mucosal Barriers: From Organoids to Organs-on-Chips

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January 29, 2021

Mucosal barriers are the gateways to all internal organs, serving to transport oxygen, nutrients, and waste and at the same time performing enormous feats of protection against infection and other hazardous insults. The explosion of interest in the human microbiome – especially but not only that in the gut – has driven new interest in building human mucosal barrier models. This talk will highlight three related themes: (i) engineering synthetic microenvironments to expand primary adult epithelial organoids and induce morphogenesis into mucosal barriers (ii) engineering microfluidic devices to create microbial-mucosal interfaces that enable chronic co-culture of the most super strict anaerobes, such as Faecalibacterium prausnitzii, with a colon mucosal barrier and (iii) interconnection of mucosal barriers with other tissues in systemic circuits to illuminate the role of gut-derived bacterial metabolites on function of other organ systems. Examples will emphasize how these approaches can be used to model chronic inflammatory diseases.

Cell ScienceDrug DiscoveryImmunology

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