Human organoid system fundamentally mimic a part of the human body but not the entire body. Organoid system lacks the interorgan communication. Therefore, human organoids are limited to reproduction of organ-specific or tissue-specific micro physiology, a limitation to bear in mind prior to the entering this exciting field.

However, efforts are already made in order to overcome this limitation. Multiple organoids have been connected to study communication between liver, pancreas and gastrointestinal tracts, cell migration between the developing forebrain and hindbrain and the interaction between the brain and hormone-producing organs.

The development of tools to help us model organ-level communication will progress although the capacity is likely to lag in comparison to other fields (1,2,3).

Organoid-on-a-chip technology

Efforts to bring together the fields of organoid research and organ-on-a chip research are particularly exciting, resulting in an organoid-on-a-chip technology (4). The potential generation of a chamber device that enables the separate culture of distinct organoid types, thus preventing the uncontrolled fusion of organoids while permitting organoid-organoid communication.

Finally, the effect of extracellular matrix composition on organoid culture is yet to be defined, uncertainty in the composition of the extracellular matrix can heavily influence the outcomes in chemical screening or genetic screening of human organoids.

Furthermore, work is ongoing towards the development of organoid culture platforms for larger scale production, organoid-based high content screening platforms and micro-organoid-on-a-chip as miniature (5,6).


1. Koike, H. et al. Modelling human hepato-biliary-pancreatic organogenesis from the foregut-midgut boundary. Nature 574, 112–116 (2019).

2. Bagley, J. A., Reumann, D., Bian, S., Levi-Strauss, J. & Knoblich, J. A. Fused cerebral organoids model interactions between brain regions. Nat. Methods 14, 743–751 (2017).

3. Xiang, Y. et al. Fusion of regionally specified hPSC-derived organoids models human brain development and interneuron migration. Cell Stem Cell 21, 383–398 (2017).

4. Zhang, C., Zhao, Z., Abdul Rahim, N. A., van Noort, D. & Yu, H. Towards a human-on-chip: culturing multiple cell types on a chip with compartmentalized microenvironments. Lab. Chip 9, 3185–3192 (2009).

5. Giobbe, G. G. et al. Extracellular matrix hydrogel derived from decellularized tissues enables endodermal organoid culture. Nat. Commun. 10, 5658 (2019).

6. Jee, J. H. et al. Development of collagen-based 3D matrix for gastrointestinal tract-derived organoid culture. Stem Cell Int. 2019, 8472712 (2019).