A Human Organoid Model for Studying Maternal Diabetes
Study in a Sentence: Researchers engineered an organoid model of the developing human heart to study the effects of pregestational diabetes.
Healthy for Humans: Pregestational diabetes is maternal diabetes in the first trimester of pregnancy and is one of the major contributing factors of congenital heart defects. Studying the effects of pregestational diabetes on the developing heart, though, is difficult due to the ethical and scientific limitations of using human and animal embryos.
Redefining Research: By engineering human pluripotent stem cells into embryo-like organoids and then using glucose and insulin to mimic the diabetic environment, researchers developed an embryoid model to study the effects of pregestational diabetes on the developing heart. This model can be used to better understand pregestational diabetes and develop new preventive and therapeutic strategies.