HUB Organoids™ reveal link between HBV infection and liver cancer

HUB Organoids™ derived from patients with chronic hepatitis B show the first molecular signs of liver cancer.

The molecular events that drive liver cell transformation following Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection have remained largely unclear, due to the absence of a relevant primary model system.

Research with cell lines has produced results that are hard to translate to patients and a good animal model is lacking as HBV only infects human cells.

In this paper researchers from HUB and Erasmus MC discovered:

  • How healthy human liver organoids can be infected with HBV to perform drug screening and assess drug safety and toxicity 
  • That the gene expression profile of organoids from cirrhotic liver tissue show greater similarity to liver cancer tissue than to healthy liver
  • How HUB Organoids from human liver can be used as a platform for modeling HBV infection and related tumorigenesis 

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