Interview Released with Robert Vries, CEO at Hubrecht Organoid Technology speaker at 3D Cell Culture

With SMi Group’s 3D Cell Culture returning for its 5th year on the 10th and 11th February 2021, as a virtual conference with online access only, the two-day conference is anticipated to have a closer look at various topics regarding developing complex physiologically relevant cell models in vitro.

SMi Group had the opportunity to speak with our key speaker Robert Vries, CEO at Hubrecht Organoid Technology for the conference, to discuss some of the challenges they face in the industry and their strategies for overcoming them.

Robert Vries received his PhD in Biochemistry from the Leiden University Medical Center on a molecular study of oncogenic transformation. He subsequently moved to Stanford University (USA) to do his Post Doc studying neural stem cells. Upon his return to the Netherlands he continued the study of adult stem cells in the group of Prof Hans Clevers at the Hubrecht Institute in The Netherlands. In the group of Hans Clevers he was part of the team that developed the breakthrough technology that allowed the expansion of adult stem cells. The so-called Organoid Technology became the basis of the non-profit company ‘Hubrecht Organoid Technology’ (HUB) of which he is currently the CEO.

Robert Vries in depth speaker interview can be downloaded on the conference website in the ‘download centre’, and below is a snippet of the exclusive interview.

What is the greatest challenge for you to personally overcome within the 3D Cell Culture field currently?
‘The key obstacles have been two-fold. Firstly, there are the technical challenges: organoid technology is an advanced cell line technology, and it brings with it the issues of being less readily reproducible in the lab. Fundamentally, if the technical conditions cannot be aligned there will be a lower success rate. This challenge has been overcome as companies have developed better reagents and more robust protocols when using organoid technology.’

How would you like to see the 3D Cell Culture market develop in the future and where do you think the biggest growth area will be in the next few years?
‘In the last 10 years the 3D Cell Culture market has seen consistent growth, and I foresee that this trend will continue. The most significant growth will be in the application of organoid technology to clinical trials, and it is here in which they have the potential to do something new. We have seen that organoids can be used in a stage called the ‘pre-clinical clinical trial’, and if successful we could see organoid technology take over an entire portion of the clinical trial space – ultimately making drug trials more efficient and less costly.’

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3D Cell Culture Conference 2021
Conference: 10th – 11th February 2021
Virtual Conference: Online Access Only

About SMi Group: Established since 1993, the SMi Group is a global event-production company that specializes in Business-to-Business Conferences, Workshops, Masterclasses and online Communities. We create and deliver events in the Defence, Security, Energy, Utilities, Finance and Pharmaceutical industries. We pride ourselves on having access to the world’s most forward-thinking opinion leaders and visionaries, allowing us to bring our communities together to Learn, Engage, Share and Network. More information can be found at