The aim of this study was to establish an improved preclinical disease model for colorectal cancer, closer resembling in vivo carcinomas, to obtain higher predictive properties, and offer opportunities for individualized therapies.
Therefore, a 3D-printed model was developed using human colorectal adenocarcinoma (Caco-2) cells.
Histological assessment revealed the formation of glandular-like structures which show greater pathomorphological resemblance to tumors than monolayer (2D) cultures do. RNA expression profiles in 3D culture were marked by the upregulation of genes involved in cell adhesion and hypoxia and the downregulation of cell cycle programs.
Testing this 3D experimental platform with three of the most commonly used chemotherapeutics in colorectal cancer treatment revealed increased resistance compared to 2D cell cultures. Moreover, the system was successfully extended to primary colorectal cancer samples derived from 3 patients.
A colorectal cancer 3D bioprinting workflow as a platform for disease modeling and chemotherapeutic screening
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