A coterie of health insurance firms and a biotechnology company recently announced that they will start a $3.1 million validation trial in the Netherlands for the use of organoids in testing costly cystic fibrosis (CF) treatments.
Hubrecht Organoid Technology (HUB) and health insurers CZ, Zilveren Kruis and Menzis have initiated the trial to determine the viability of organoid testing for general inclusion in reimbursement programs in the treatment of CF.
According to a report by News Medical Life Sciences,
organoids are mini-organs grown in cell culture. These organoids are culled from biopsies taken from patients and faithfully mimic the genetic and phenotypic characteristics of diseased tissues.
HUB organoids have previously been used for screening and validation of cutting edge medicines.
CF is a life-threatening disease that mostly affects soft-tissue organs and manifests differently in different patients. The cost of the new drug treatments for the disorder is prohibitive and has limited benefits in certain patients. These limitations currently preclude their general inclusion in insurance reimbursement programs in the Netherlands.
As a measure to make these treatments available to the general population, there is a need to identify patients who will respond to the treatment, which can be achieved through organoid testing.
“Because we do not want to exclude anyone who requires new medication, this validation trial is very important to develop a test that will show who does and who does not benefit from a specific therapy,” Joep de Groot, CbusineZ board director told the publication. The firm is a subsidiary of insurer CZ.
Pressure on healthcare highlights lack of health insurance culture
Irish industry groups to merge ahead of UK insurers’ exodus