3-D-written model to provide better understanding of cancer spread

March 2, 2018

Purdue researcher Luis Solorio has helped create a lifelike cancer environment out of polymer to better predict how drugs might stop its course.

Previous research has shown that most cancer deaths happen because of how it spreads, or metastasizes, in the body. A major hurdle for treating cancer is not being able to experiment with metastasis itself and knock out what it needs to spread.

Studies in the past have used a 3-D printer to recreate a controlled cancer environment, but these replicas are still not realistic enough for drug screening.

“We need a much finer resolution than what a 3-D printer can create,” said Solorio, an assistant professor of biomedical engineering.

Rather than 3-D printing, Solorio and a team of researchers have proposed 3-D writing. The device that they developed, a 3-D jet writer, acts like a 3-D printer by producing polymer microtissues as they are shaped in the body, but on a smaller, more authentic scale with pore sizes large enough for cells to enter the polymer structure just as they would a system in the body.

3-D jet writing is a fine-tuned form of electrospinning, the process of using a charged syringe containing a polymer solution to draw out a fiber, and then deposit the fiber onto a plate to form a structure. This structure is a scaffold that facilitates cell activity.

Solorio has so far used the device to write a structure that drew in cancer cells to sites in mice where cancer would not normally develop, confirming that the device could create a feasible cancer environment. Solorio’s other studies have increased cancer cells in human samples for better analysis and maintained receptors on these cells that drugs would need to find.

Medical Xpress has the full article

Sponsored Recommendations

Trailblazing Technologies: Looking at the Top Technologies for the Emerging U.S. Healthcare System

Register for the first session of the Healthcare Innovation Spotlight Series today to learn more about 'Healthcare's New Promise: Generative AI', the latest technology that is...

Data: The Bedrock of Digital Engagement

Join us on March 21st to discover how data serves as the cornerstone of digital engagement in healthcare. Learn from Frederick Health's transformative journey and gain practical...

Northeast Georgia Health System: Scaling Digital Transformation in a Competitive Market

Find out how Northeast Georgia Health System (NGHS) enabled digital access to achieve new patient acquisition goals in Georgia's highly competitive healthcare market.

2023 Care Access Benchmark Report for Healthcare Organizations

To manage growing consumer expectations and shrinking staff resources, forward-thinking healthcare organizations have adopted digital strategies, but recent research shows that...