Tear Ducts in a 3D version of the program aids the discovery of drugs to treat dry eye

Tear Ducts in a 3D version of the program aids the discovery of drugs to treat dry eye ...

Advancements in cell culture methods have allowed for the development of organoids stem cell-derived mini-organs that mimic the tissue structure of our body. Currently, researchers in Japan have developed a new organoid system that may bring tears of joy to those who have dry eye syndrome.

A research team led by Osaka University has demonstrated a method for the formation of three-dimensional human stem cell-derived organoids that model the tear duct (also known as the lacrimal gland), exhibiting organization and branching patterns similar to those observed in the human lacrimal gland during development.

Stem cells have the capacity to differentiate into any cell type of the body. Using human induced pluripotent stem cells, treatment with a defined spectrum of signaling molecules can aid stem cell differentiation and self-organization into organoids similar to those seen in the body''s organs. Dry eye syndrome is a common condition known as Sjogrens syndrome. The research team has developed a two-dimensional (2D) eye-like organoid that is specifically designed to facilitate vision and protect the eye. The la

We first isolated lacrimal gland progenitor cells from our 2D human eye-like organoids, according to leading researcher/first author Ryuhei Hayashi. We discovered that further cultivation of this progenitor cell population, which expressed early markers of lacrimal gland development, led to the successful formation of 3D lacrimal gland organoids.

Organoids expressed key markers associated with the lacrimal gland development, but the organoids also displayed organizational patterns. A research team conducted experiments using organoids to investigate the function of the organoids, which were transplanted into rodents in which the lacrimal gland had been partially or fully removed.

According to last author, after transplantation, the organoids distinguished from mature lacrimal gland tissue.

The global first technology for the generation of 3D lacrimal gland organoids from human iPS cells is the technology used by research teams. These organoids may serve as a foundation for the development of regenerative therapies and therapies for the treatment of severe dry eye syndrome as associated with Sjogrens syndrome and other disorders.

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