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Tumor-on-Chip Co-culture System: An Innovative Tool in Personalized Medicine to Investigate Cancer Progression

A Champions AACR 2024 Poster


Cancer research has traditionally relied on two-dimensional (2D) cell culture, focusing mainly on cancer epithelial cells and their aberrant genetics. However, over the past decade, the contribution of tumor stroma to the complex tumor microenvironment (TME) has been highly explored as a novel target.

Current in vitro models are often static and do not incorporate stromal and/or immune compartment thus often lacking the relevant tissue physiology. Animal models are not fully translational, and it often takes several months to iteratively probe new targets and mechanism of action (MOA).

Recent advances with engineered co-culture systems, such as microfluidic organ-on-chips, have overcome some of these limitations to better model cell-cell and cell-extracellular matrix (ECM) interactions. The microfluidic nature of these systems enables longer-term cell culture and allows for continuous effluent collection to monitor byproducts for tissue function and viability. They are also designed to recapitulate organ-level structure, function, and physical forces that mimic in vivo cyclic strain and fluid shear stress.

Here, we use the Tumor-on-Chip (TOC) model to develop a complex co-culture system of our previously established TumorGraft3D (CTG3Ds) biobank at Champions Oncology. 

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