Special Issue "Cancer Treatment: Clinical Applications of Cell Cultures"

A special issue of Medicina (ISSN 1648-9144). This special issue belongs to the section "Oncology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 August 2021).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Konstantinos Dimas
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Thessaly, Larissa, Greece
Interests: cancer research; anticancer drug development; mouse models of cancer; xenografts; cell culture; natural products; small molecules

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Since their development at the end of the 19th/beginning of the 20th century, cell cultures have been the preferred technique for research in almost every biomedical field. Cell cultures involve cell isolation from their primary (natural) environment (from animals and/or patients) and the subsequent adaptation of these cells to grow in a controlled artificial environment (in vitro growth). One of the major advantages of this method is that cell cultures, to a great extent, keep the features of the natural environment (tissue and disease) from which they have been derived. Cells from specific living tissues, whether normal or diseased, can be cultured either as short-term or longer-term cultures (e.g., established cell lines). It is well known that the great advances and progress in biomedicine could not have been achieved without the use of cultured cells. However, it is not only research that has benefitted from cell cultures: diagnosis and the development of new therapies for deadly human diseases have been based on the use of cell cultures. Regenerative medicine, in vitro fertilization, and even precision medicine in cancer and current cancer immunotherapies are some clinical fields that have been advanced based on cell culture techniques saving and/or largely improving the quality of life of innumerous patients. In this context, this Special Issue of Medicina is dedicated to clinical applications of cell cultures for the treatment of cancer. We aim to host a unique collection of papers that will provide researchers with cutting-edge research and critical information on the potential role of cell cultures in the war against cancer.

Dr. Konstantinos Dimas
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Medicina is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1500 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Cancer
  • Precision medicine
  • Primary cells
  • Patient-derived cells
  • Spheroids
  • Organoids
  • Immunotherapies
  • Diagnosis
  • Treatment
  • Biomarkers
  • Chemosensitivity
  • Cancer stem cells

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

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Article
Altered SERCA Expression in Breast Cancer
Medicina 2021, 57(10), 1074; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/medicina57101074 - 08 Oct 2021
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Abstract
Background and Objectives: Calcium (Ca2+) signaling is critical for the normal functioning of various cellular activities. However, abnormal changes in cellular Ca2+ can contribute to pathological conditions, including various types of cancer. The maintenance of intracellular Ca2+ levels is [...] Read more.
Background and Objectives: Calcium (Ca2+) signaling is critical for the normal functioning of various cellular activities. However, abnormal changes in cellular Ca2+ can contribute to pathological conditions, including various types of cancer. The maintenance of intracellular Ca2+ levels is achieved through tightly regulated processes that help maintain Ca2+ homeostasis. Several types of regulatory proteins are involved in controlling intracellular Ca2+ levels, including the sarco/endoplasmic reticulum (SR/ER) Ca2+ ATPase pump (SERCA), which maintains Ca2+ levels released from the SR/ER. In total, three ATPase SR/ER Ca2+-transporting (ATP2A) 1-3 genes exist, which encode for several isoforms whose expression profiles are tissue-specific. Recently, it has become clear that abnormal SERCA expression and activity are associated with various types of cancer, including breast cancer. Breast carcinomas represent 40% of all cancer types that affect women, with a wide variety of pathological and clinical conditions. Materials and methods: Using cBioPortal breast cancer patient data, Kaplan–Meier plots demonstrated that high ATP2A1 and ATP2A3 expression was associated with reduced patient survival. Results: The present study found significantly different SERCA specific-type expressions in a series of breast cancer cell lines. Moreover, bioinformatics analysis indicated that ATP2A1 and ATP2A3 expression was highly altered in patients with breast cancer. Conclusion: Overall, the present data suggest that SERCA gene-specific expressioncan possibly be considered as a crucial target for the control of breast cancer development and progression. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cancer Treatment: Clinical Applications of Cell Cultures)
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Article
Evaluation of KRAS Concomitant Mutations in Advanced Lung Adenocarcinoma Patients
Medicina 2021, 57(10), 1039; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/medicina57101039 - 29 Sep 2021
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Abstract
Background and Objectives: One of the most frequently mutated oncogenes in cancer belongs to the Ras family of proto-oncogenes, which encode distinct key signaling events. RAS gain-of-function mutations are present in ~30% of all human cancers, with KRAS being the most frequently [...] Read more.
Background and Objectives: One of the most frequently mutated oncogenes in cancer belongs to the Ras family of proto-oncogenes, which encode distinct key signaling events. RAS gain-of-function mutations are present in ~30% of all human cancers, with KRAS being the most frequently mutated isoform showing alterations in different cancer types including lung cancer. This study aimed to investigate the incidence of KRAS mutations, and concomitant mutations, in advanced non-small cell lung adenocarcinoma patients. Materials and Methods: This was a retrospective study, where genomic DNA extracted from paraffin-embedded tumor tissues from 121 Brazilian advanced non-small cell lung adenocarcinoma patients were analyzed to evaluate via Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) the incidence of KRAS mutations and co-occurring mutations and correlate, when possible, to clinicopathological characteristics. Statistical analyses were performed to calculate the prevalence of mutations and to investigate the association between mutational status, mutation type, and sex. Results: The results showed a prevalence of male (N = 63; 54.8%) compared to female patients (N = 52, 45.2%), and mutant KRAS was present in 20.86% (24/115) of all samples. Interestingly, 33.3% of the mutant KRAS samples showed other mutations simultaneously. Conclusions: This study revealed the presence of rare KRAS concomitant mutations in advanced lung adenocarcinoma patients. Further investigation on the importance of these genomic alterations in patient prognosis and treatment response is warranted. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cancer Treatment: Clinical Applications of Cell Cultures)
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Article
Nano-Motion Analysis for Rapid and Label Free Assessing of Cancer Cell Sensitivity to Chemotherapeutics
Medicina 2021, 57(5), 446; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/medicina57050446 - 04 May 2021
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Abstract
Background and Objectives: Optimization of chemotherapy is crucial for cancer patients. Timely and costly efficient treatments are emerging due to the increasing incidence of cancer worldwide. Here, we present a methodology of nano-motion analysis that could be developed to serve as a [...] Read more.
Background and Objectives: Optimization of chemotherapy is crucial for cancer patients. Timely and costly efficient treatments are emerging due to the increasing incidence of cancer worldwide. Here, we present a methodology of nano-motion analysis that could be developed to serve as a screening tool able to determine the best chemotherapy option for a particular patient within hours. Materials and Methods: Three different human cancer cell lines and their multidrug resistant (MDR) counterparts were analyzed with an atomic force microscope (AFM) using tipless cantilevers to adhere the cells and monitor their nano-motions. Results: The cells exposed to doxorubicin (DOX) differentially responded due to their sensitivity to this chemotherapeutic. The death of sensitive cells corresponding to the drop in signal variance occurred in less than 2 h after DOX application, while MDR cells continued to move, even showing an increase in signal variance. Conclusions: Nano-motion sensing can be developed as a screening tool that will allow simple, inexpensive and quick testing of different chemotherapeutics for each cancer patient. Further investigations on patient-derived tumor cells should confirm the method’s applicability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cancer Treatment: Clinical Applications of Cell Cultures)
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Review

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Review
Tumor Chemosensitivity Assays Are Helpful for Personalized Cytotoxic Treatments in Cancer Patients
Medicina 2021, 57(6), 636; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/medicina57060636 - 19 Jun 2021
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Abstract
Tumor chemosensitivity assays (TCAs), also known as drug response assays or individualized tumor response tests, have been gaining attention over the past few decades. Although there have been strong positive correlations between the results of these assays and clinical outcomes, they are still [...] Read more.
Tumor chemosensitivity assays (TCAs), also known as drug response assays or individualized tumor response tests, have been gaining attention over the past few decades. Although there have been strong positive correlations between the results of these assays and clinical outcomes, they are still not considered routine tests in the care of cancer patients. The correlations between the assays’ results (drug sensitivity or resistance) and the clinical evaluations (e.g., response to treatment, progression-free survival) are highly promising. However, there is still a need to design randomized controlled prospective studies to secure the place of these assays in routine use. One of the best ideas to increase the value of these assays could be the combination of the assay results with the omics technologies (e.g., pharmacogenetics that gives an idea of the possible side effects of the drugs). In the near future, the importance of personalized chemotherapy is expected to dictate the use of these omics technologies. The omics relies on the macromolecules (Deoxyribonucleic acid -DNA-, ribonucleic acid -RNA-) and proteins (meaning the structure) while TCAs operate on living cell populations (meaning the function). Therefore, wise combinations of TCAs and omics could be a highly promising novel landscape in the modern care of cancer patients. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cancer Treatment: Clinical Applications of Cell Cultures)
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