Organoids & Covid-19

A team of international researchers are growing miniature organs in the lab to understand how Covid-19 damages the body.

Studies using organoids – small bits of tissue used to replicate organs – are showing the new coronavirus’s ability to invade lungs, liver, kidneys, and gut which might explain some severe complications in patients infected with the virus.

The teams are from the Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia, Spain, Kyoto University, Japan, and University of British Columbia, Canada and the Weill Cornell Medicine, USA.

Bart Haagmans, a virologist at Erasmus University Medical Center, the Netherlands, explained to Nature that organoid studies had limitations as they do not reflect the ‘crosstalk between organs that happens in the body’, meaning the findings will still need to be validated in animal models and clinical studies.

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