LONDON – New human brain organoids that precisely model the three hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease – amyloid plaque-like lesions, progressive neuronal death and abnormal accumulations of tau – are now ready to be developed for use in high-throughput drug screening.
Technical challenges at the annual meeting of the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) meeting led to at least one lively exchange of stem cell jokes in the chat box as the audience waited for talks to resume, including stem cell parental advice: “You can be anything you want when you grow up!”
The three founders of newly launched Volastra Therapeutics Inc. had plenty in common when they decided to create the company. Their offices happened to be a half block apart on 69th Street in midtown Manhattan. Their interests in oncology were similar but each approached the disease from different angles.
When developmental neurobiologist Arnold Kriegstein talks about his work, it sounds for all the world like he is talking about the brains of teenagers. They are stressed. Their identity is mixed up. But putting them in a good environment is helpful to their development. Kriegstein, though, was describing brain organoids.