Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Replacement organs from a Petri dish: The Körber European Science Prize 2016 goes to Hans Clevers

07.06.2016

Hans Clevers is to receive the Körber European Science Prize 2016. The Körber Foundation is awarding the Körber Prize to Clevers for his ground-breaking findings on stem cells.

Hans Clevers is to receive the Körber European Science Prize 2016, which is endowed with 750,000 euros. The Dutch biologist and physician has developed a new standard procedure for the unlimited reproduction of adult stem cells, enabling the growth of rudimentary organs in miniature format, known as organoids.


The Körber Foundation is awarding the Körber Prize to Hans Clevers for his ground-breaking findings on stem cells

Koerber Foundation/Friedrun Reinhold

Drugs can now be tested in lifelike conditions in the Petri dish, and damaged organs can be repaired and possibly replaced. The Körber Foundation is awarding the Körber Prize to Hans Clevers for his ground-breaking findings and their further development up to clinical application. Clevers intends to use the prize money to conduct research on gene therapy.

Hans Clevers, 59, studied biology and medicine and obtained his doctorate in immunology in 1985 at the University of Utrecht. As a postdoc he conducted research for three years at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston. From 1991 to 2002 he was Professor of Immunology at the University of Utrecht, and since 2002 has been a Professor of Molecular Genetics. From 2012 to 2015 he was also President of the Dutch Academy of Sciences. Since 2015 Clevers has been Head of the Research Department at the Princess Máxima Center in Utrecht, a newly established paediatric cancer hospital.

The prize winner conducts research primarily on adult stem cells in digestive organs, in particular in the small intestine. In contrast to embryonic stem cells that are present only in early embryos, adult stem cells are present in the body after birth and can repair defects throughout a person's life. They also regularly renew the inner tissue lining (epithelium) of the small intestine.

Clevers is particularly interested in the signals that cause the stem cells to divide. Using a receptor (Lgr5) discovered by him which is only present in stem cells, he succeeded in isolating these cells from retrieved intestinal tissue. The Lgr5 receptor is also found in the stem cells of many other organs, such as the liver, stomach, pancreas, kidneys and prostate.

In 2009, Clevers, together with his postdoc Toshiro Sato, successfully generated an intestine-organoid from a single intestinal stem cell, which survived for several months in the Petri dish. The team had to assemble a cocktail of several growth factors, including a gel called "Matrigel", which acts as a support structure to facilitate the development of the three-dimensional organoid. This is regarded as a breakthrough in stem cell research: In the meantime, there are over 200 laboratories worldwide, cultivating organoids, including miniature stomachs and tiny kidneys and livers.

The mini-organs, which can also be cultivated from tumour tissue, are already suitable for testing drugs. "Instead of subjecting a bowel cancer patient to non-specific chemotherapy, we can prescribe a drug that has been particularly effective on his laboratory-tested tumour organoids," says Hans Clevers.

The prize-winner has already demonstrated in laboratory mice that reimplanted liver organoids can actually take over the function of the liver. This shows their suitability as replacement organs. In 2013 Clevers successfully removed the genetic defect from intestinal stem cells of patients suffering from the hereditary disease cystic fibrosis, using a newly developed genetic engineering process (CRISPR/Cas9). Tests on the organoids generated from the corrected stem cells have shown them to be free of cystic fibrosis. Clevers hopes to be able to cure rare hereditary liver defects in the same way in the future.

The Körber European Science Prize 2016 will be presented to the Dutch research scientist on 7 September in the large festival hall of Hamburg City Hall.

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.koerber-prize.org Further information and pictures for download

Andrea Bayerlein | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

Further reports about: Petri dish adult stem cells cystic fibrosis kidneys stem cells tumour

More articles from Awards Funding:

nachricht Six German-Russian Research Groups Receive Three Years of Funding
12.09.2017 | Hermann von Helmholtz-Gemeinschaft Deutscher Forschungszentren

nachricht IVAM Marketing Prize recognizes convincing technology marketing for the tenth time
22.08.2017 | IVAM Fachverband für Mikrotechnik

All articles from Awards Funding >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

Im Focus: Quantum Sensors Decipher Magnetic Ordering in a New Semiconducting Material

For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.

Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...

Im Focus: Fast, convenient & standardized: New lab innovation for automated tissue engineering & drug

MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems Holding GmbH about commercial use of a multi-well tissue plate for automated and reliable tissue engineering & drug testing.

MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems...

Im Focus: Silencing bacteria

HZI researchers pave the way for new agents that render hospital pathogens mute

Pathogenic bacteria are becoming resistant to common antibiotics to an ever increasing degree. One of the most difficult germs is Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Molecular Force Sensors

20.09.2017 | Life Sciences

Producing electricity during flight

20.09.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

20.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>