Skip to main content

Roche to found Institute for Human Biology

| News

Roche to found Institute for Human Biology


Roche has announced that it will be establishing the Institute of Human Biology in Basel. Up to 250 employees will be tasked with promoting the broad application of human model systems in pharmaceutical research and clinical practice.

Roche global headquarters in Basel (image: Roche)

The pharma group Roche is establishing an Institute of Human Biology (IHB) in Basel. In conjunction with a satellite laboratory in Schlieren in the canton of Zurich, scientists and bioengineers will in future carry out research there on living 2D or 3D miniature replicas of human tissue and organs, which are more commonly referred to as organoids.

These human models are created on the basis of human stem cells. According to a press release issued by Roche, in this way the dependency on animal testing could be reduced. Moreover, human model systems could potentially facilitate the discovery of new human biology and the identification of drug targets that would otherwise be impossible using classical discovery methods.

“Human model systems such as organoids are the future of our industry”, explains Prof. Dr. Hans Clevers, Head of Pharma Research and Early Development (pRED) at Roche and a pioneer in the field of organoids. These could potentially help to develop more effective and safer medicines that could, in turn, be made available to patients more quickly.

Researchers with great scientific freedom

The number of employees is set to rise to around 250 over the next four years. According to Roche, the researchers have the opportunity to pursue basic research activities with “great scientific freedom”. The insights gained will not only benefit the Group, but in many cases will also be made available to the broader scientific community and regulatory authorities.

“The work at the IHB has the potential to redefine how we discover and develop medicines over the next decade”, comments Dr. Matthias Lutolf, Head IHB at Roche, in the press release. “The institute is uniquely positioned in bringing together biology, bioengineering and data science around human model systems and applying them to real-world challenges in drug discovery and research”, he concludes.

Share this article

Sign up to receive our newsletter in your inbox.

You may also be interested in

The power of a persuasive pitch deck

Are you an entrepreneur striving to secure investment for your biotech startup? Start with an effective pitch deck to catch...
Read More

Roche investing an additional 1.2 billion Swiss francs in Basel

Roche will be putting an additional 1.2 billion Swiss francs towards the renovation of its site in Basel. This investment...
Read More

Nouscom secures 67.5 million euros in financing

Biotech company Nouscom has raised 67.5 million euros in a series C financing round. The Basel-based firm intends to use...
Read More

Celebrating six months of innovation: i4Challenge accelerator New Ideas 2022/2023

On the 5th of July 2023, the 3rd iteration of the i4Challenge accelerator program New Ideas came to its conclusion....
Read More

How open innovation in healthtech hubs is fueling the rise of digital healthcare

How the ever-increasing uptake of digital solutions is enhancing patient engagement, increasing access to care and lowering the cost of...
Read More

How to access the U.S. market with your medical device

In one of our latest Venture Mentoring events by Basel Are Business & Innovation, we invited Nila-Pia Rähle to speak...
Read More

Do you have a question? We'd like to hear from you.