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Whole-Tumor Cell Culture Can Predict Drug Response in Breast Cancer

WTC model allows for personalized drug testing within 10 days, even for small-sized tumors

By Elana Gotkine HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, Jan. 3, 2023 (HealthDay News) — A whole-tumor cell culture (WTC) model can predict treatment response in breast cancer, according to a study published online Dec. 27 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Noting that there is patient-to-patient variability in response to antineoplastic compounds in breast cancer, Xinsong Chen, Ph.D., from the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, and colleagues assessed the WTC ex vivo model for predicting drug response in breast cancer.

The researchers found that the model could be stably established from all breast tumors with a high success rate (98 of 116). In addition, the parental tumors could be reassembled with the endogenous microenvironment. On investigation of a broad range of breast cancer therapies with WTCs derived from a patient cohort, strong clinical associations and predictive values were observed. In a separate validation study where the neoadjuvant treatment regimens of 15 breast cancer patients were mimicked, the correlation between WTC-based test results and patients’ clinical responses further supported the model accuracy. The WTC model allowed for personalized drug testing within 10 days, even for small-sized tumors. WTC testing can stratify patient groups for assignment into appropriate clinical trials when coupled with genomic and transcriptomic analyses.

“We would propose the breast cancer WTC as an advantageous preclinical model for academic research and pharmaceutical drug development, also with good potential to assist future patient treatment design after further clinical validation studies,” the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical and medical technology industries.

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