A major step towards individualized cancer therapy
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IMAGE: The team opened a small window in eggshells and implanted ovarian tumour cells on top of the vascular membrane surrounding 10-day-old chicken embryos. view more 

Credit: Izumi Mindy Takamiya

Fuyuhiko Tamanoi of Kyoto University’s Institute for Integrated Cell-Material Sciences (iCeMS) and colleagues in the US succeeded in establishing a versatile, powerful and convenient model to analyse human cancer.

They developed a ‘chicken egg tumour model’ in which cultured ovarian cancer cells are transplanted on top of the membrane that surrounds a 10-day-old chicken embryo. An ovarian tumour forms on top of the membrane within three days of transplantation.

The team had similar results when they used ovarian tumour samples taken directly from patients, showing that their chicken egg model provides a convenient system for replicating human cancer. This conclusion is supported by their detailed characterization of the tumour, demonstrating that it possesses all major cancer features. “We were surprised when the tumour was formed in three days,” says Tamanoi. ” This is very rapid considering that it takes weeks to do the same with mice. We can start using this model to test for anti-cancer drugs tailored to each cancer patient’s needs. The process can be completed within

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