Robust, Long-Term Culture of Endoderm-Derived Hepatic Organoids for Disease Modeling

Akbari S., Sevinc G. G., Ersoy N., Basak O., Kaplan K., Sevinc K., ...More

STEM CELL REPORTS, vol.13, no.4, pp.627-641, 2019 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 13 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.stemcr.2019.08.007
  • Journal Name: STEM CELL REPORTS
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.627-641
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes


Organoid technologies have become a powerful emerging tool to model liver diseases, for drug screening, and for personalized treatments. These applications are, however, limited in their capacity to generate functional hepatocytes in a reproducible and efficient manner. Here, we generated and characterized the hepatic organoid (eHEPO) culture system using human induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived EpCAM-positive endodermal cells as an intermediate. eHEPOs can be produced within 2 weeks and expanded long term (>16 months) without any loss of differentiation capacity to mature hepatocytes. Starting from patient-specific iPSCs, we modeled citrullinemia type 1, a urea cycle disorder caused by mutations in the argininosuccinate synthetase (ASST) enzyme. The disease-related ammonia accumulation phenotype in eHEPOs could be reversed by the overexpression of the wild-type ASS1 gene, which also indicated that this model is amenable to genetic manipulation. Thus, eHEPOs are excellent unlimited cell sources to generate functional hepatic organoids in a fast and efficient manner.