While preclinical models such as orthotopic tumors generated in mice from patient-derived specimens are widely used to predict sensitivity or therapeutic interventions for cancer, such xenografts can be slow, require extensive infrastructure, and can make in situ assessment difficult. Such concerns are heightened in highly aggressive cancers, such as glioblastoma (GBM), that display genetic diversity and short mean survival. Biomimetic biomaterial technologies offer an approach to create ex vivo models that reflect biophysical features of the tumor microenvironment (TME). We describe a microfluidic templating approach to generate spatially graded hydrogels containing patient-derived GBM cells to explore drug efficacy and resistance mechanisms.
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The authors are grateful for seed funding provided by the Illini 4000 as well as the by Mayo Clinic—University of Illinois Alliance for Technology-Based Healthcare. Research reported in this publication was also supported by the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number R01 CA197488. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the NIH. The authors are also grateful for additional funding provided by the Illinoi4000, the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, and the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
The supplementary material for this article can be found at https://doi.org/10.1557/mrc.2017.85.
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Pedron, S., Polishetty, H., Pritchard, A.M. et al. Spatially graded hydrogels for preclinical testing of glioblastoma anticancer therapeutics. MRS Communications 7, 442–449 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1557/mrc.2017.85