Technique for Engineering Centimeter-size Model Tumors

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2019-LELI-68697
Researchers at Purdue University have developed a method that produces in vitro tumors in the centimeter-size range with relevant pathological traits. In contrast, current in vitro 3D cultures or "microtumors" typically yield cell aggregates less than 800 microns in size. Although these microtumors successfully mimic cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions observed in vivo, tumors in that size range are rarely detected in the clinic. Further, large engineered tumors produced by aggregation begin to die within a few hours. Larger, more stable in vitro models with clinically relevant architecture and cell phenotypes would be more relevant for testing drug delivery systems and other potential therapies. Bioprinting has been applied to the creation of large multicellular tumors that are reproducible and finely controllable; however, bioprinting requires high levels of expertise and access to expensive equipment. Using a simpler process, the Purdue researchers' tumors remain viable for weeks and have traits relevant to the clinical phenotype, including a heterogeneous composition consisting of both preinvasive and invasive phenotypes and a structure allowing for adequate diffusion of nutrients both within the construct and to an exogenous extracellular matrix.

Advantages:
-Large tumors with clinically relevant phenotype
-Tumors can survive several days (even weeks)
-Does not require access to a bioprinter or training on how to use a bioprinter

Potential Applications:
-Evaluation of drug delivery systems or other proposed therapies
Jun 9, 2020
Utility Patent
United States
(None)
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Jun 19, 2019
Provisional-Patent
United States
(None)
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