From inventions like the microscope to today's advanced therapies and exceptional healthcare systems, the Netherlands has always been at the forefront of medical innovation technology. Meet MIMETAS, one of the leading companies at the Bioscience Park in Leiden - recreating human organ systems in miniature with cells in the chips of their OrganoPlate® platform.
'Organ-on-a-chip' is the name of their latest advanced and sustainable technology: small living models of human organs – both in diseased and healthy states – that enable advanced drug development.
By creating organ-on-a-chip models, MIMETAS places drugs in a translatable environment to actual human biology. This model enables pharmaceutical researchers to discover much earlier in the drug development pipeline whether a medicine can be safe and successful in humans and decide whether to continue. It also results in less use of animal testing in research.
In the Biopartner 5 building on the Oegstgeest segment of the Bio Science Park, MIMETAS is hard at work developing three-dimensional (3D) human tissue and disease models to contribute to groundbreaking therapies. The team, led by Co-CEOs Dr. Jos Joore and Dr. Paul Vulto, along with 110 dedicated employees, meticulously constructs miniature human organ systems within the confines of their OrganoPlate platform. Carefully selected cells grow in a way that collectively forms tissues resembling organs found in the human body.
Jos Joore thought the traditional way of finding medicines was cumbersome and expensive. In an interview in Leidsch Dagblad, Joore said: "Nineteen of the twenty drugs in development do not reach the finish line. The traditional medicine development model is bankrupt. We thought that there has to be a smarter way and are very fortunate that we started with this technology at the right time."
In July 2021, MIMETAS achieved a significant milestone by partnering with the Swiss pharmaceutical behemoth Roche. This partnership extends beyond typical collaborations. Together, they are actively searching for the most promising molecules for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and hepatitis B virus infections (HBV), seamlessly integrating the research and testing phases. More recently, in March 2023, MIMETAS announced another strategic partnership with global pharmaceutical company Astellas Pharma Inc. to devise novel immuno-oncology therapies based on MIMETAS' comprehensive tumour models.
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