HUB Announces Collaboration with Pfizer Inc. on Human Gut Organoids for IBD

May 3, 2018

Tiny Klunder

Utrecht, Netherlands, May 1, 2018 – HUB today announced a collaboration with Pfizer Inc. that aims to develop a Human Gut Organoid Technology Platform to aid in research related to potential treatments for Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD).

This collaboration between Pfizer and HUB seeks to develop an IBD-specific human gut organoid platform that, if successful, could potentially aid in the target identification and drug screening process.

Organoids are mini-organs grown in cell culture from patient biopsies that faithfully recapitulate the genetic and phenotypic characteristics of tissues from which they were derived.

IBD represents a heterogeneous group of inflammatory diseases of the colon and small intestine. Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis are the principal types of inflammatory bowel disease.

“IBD is a multifactorial disease with a host of genetic and environmental factors, such as gut microbiota, all playing a role. The exact role of specific genetic or environmental factors remains largely unknown, and an important reason is the lack of a relevant model system to study such a complex disease,” said Dr. Robert Vries, HUB. “We believe that HUB organoids can address multiple facets of disease and have demonstrated value as models for screening and validation of innovative medicines.”


About HUB

Hubrecht Organoid Technology (HUB) is an organization founded by the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences and the University Medical Center Utrecht. HUB exploits the pioneering work of Prof. Hans Clevers, who discovered methods to grow stem cell-derived human ‘mini-organs’ (HUB Organoids) from tissues of patients with various diseases.  The organoids, which are part of the HUB biobanks, are characterized by genome sequencing, expression profiling and sensitivity to known and experimental drugs to establish a database linking genetic and transcriptional information to drug responsiveness.  HUB offers licenses to its patented HUB Organoid Technology for drug-screening and access to organoids in the HUB biobanks for preclinical drug discovery and validation.  In addition, HUB is performing clinical studies to validate the technology’s use as a companion diagnostic. More info at


For further inquiry into this topic, please contact HUB’s Managing Director, Dr. Robert Vries ( or HUB’s Head Business Development, Dr. Bahar Ramezanpour (

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