Free Webinar | The Role of 3D in the Fight Against SARS-CoV-2: Using Organoids for COVID-19 Disease Models and Organoid Best Practices

October 21, 2020 | 1:00 pm – 2:00 PM EST

Webinar Overview:
3D cell culture techniques are emerging as versatile and biologically relevant research models to help support the current fight against COVID-19. This webinar will summarize insights on how a research team from Weill Cornell Medicine developed a lung organoid model using human pluripotent stem cells (hPSC-LOs), as well as complementary hPSC-derived colonic organoids (hPSC-COs), to study SARS-CoV-2 infectivity and immune responses, and as tools for antiviral drug discovery and development. This webinar will also highlight technologies, methods, and best practices for culturing organoids.

Human Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Lung and Colon Organoids for COVID-19 Disease Modeling
As SARS-CoV-2 primarily infects the respiratory tract, we developed a lung organoid model using human pluripotent stem cells (hPSC-LOs). The hPSC-LOs, particularly alveolar type II-like cells, are permissive to SARS-CoV-2 infection, and showed robust induction of chemokines upon SARS-CoV-2 infection, similar to what is seen in COVID-19 patients. We also generated complementary hPSC-derived colonic organoids (hPSC-COs) and found that multiple colonic cell types, especially enterocytes, express ACE2 and are permissive to SARS-CoV-2 infection. Using hPSC-LOs, we performed a high-throughput screen of FDA-approved drugs, and identified entry inhibitors of SARS-CoV-2, including imatinib, mycophenolic acid, and quinacrine dihydrochloride. Treatment at physiologically relevant levels of these drugs significantly inhibited SARS-CoV-2 infection of both hPSC-LOs and hPSC-COs. Together, these data demonstrate that hPSC-LOs and hPSC-COs infected by SARS-CoV-2 can serve as disease models to study SARS-CoV-2 infection, and provide a valuable resource for drug screening to identify candidate COVID-19 therapeutics.

Introduction to 3D Technologies for Organoid Generation
Interest in 3D cell culture has been rapidly increasing and is driven by a breadth of data showing higher biological relevance when cells are grown in three dimensions compared to classic 2D cell culture. This in vivo relevance often provides more robust models for disease modeling and drug discovery. Organoids are complex 3D structures derived from either pluripotent stem cells (PSC) or patient tissue, and offer the unique capability to study human development, disease progression, and drive discovery of novel drugs. This seminar will highlight technologies, methods, and best practices for culturing organoids.

Learning Objectives::

  • Tips on how to derive lung and colon organoids
  • Introduction to 3D cell culture tools and methods
  • Characteristics and advantages of organoid models
  • How to generate an organoid in your lab
  • Tips and techniques for organoid culture
  • Select organoid applications


Shuibing Chen, PhD
Kilts Family Associate Professor, Director of Diabetes Program, Department of Surgery
Weill Cornell Medicine

Dr. Shuibing Chen is the Kilts Family Associate Professor (tenured) and the Director of Diabetes Program in the Department of Surgery at Weill Cornell Medicine, New York. The major research interest in the Chen Laboratory at Weill Cornell Medicine focuses on organoid-base disease modeling and drug screening. Dr, Chen has published more than 40 papers on peer-reviewed high impact journals, such as Nature Medicine, Cell Stem Cell, Nature Chemical Biology, etc. She has received many awards, including New York Stem Cell Foundation Robertson Investigator, American Diabetes Association (ADA) Junior Faculty Award, ADA Innovative Award, NIH Director’s New Innovator Award, American Association for Cancer Research Career Development Award, and the ISSCR Dr. Susan Lim Award for Outstanding Young Investigator.

Austin Mogen, PhD
Senior Field Application Scientist
Corning Life Sciences

Dr. Austin Mogen is a Senior Field Application Scientist at Corning Life Sciences. He received his doctorate from the University of Florida, and gained industry experience in process development and manufacturing for viral vectors used in gene therapy. Dr. Mogen now works extensively with academic researchers and process development groups, optimizing cell culture assays and cellular scale-up conditions for drug discovery, viral production, and cellular therapeutics.


Elizabeth Abraham
Corning Life Sciences