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IBEC Seminar: David Caballero
Thursday, April 13 @ 3:00 pm–5:00 pm
Engineering the cancer: from biomaterials to on-chip solutions
David Caballero; Research Institute on Biomaterials, Biodegradables and Biomimetics, Headquarters of the European Institute of Excellence on Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine, University of Minho, Portugal.
Cancer is a complex and multifaceted pathology, which is influenced by numerous factors, including the tumor microenvironment (TME). This environment is composed of various of components that interact in a tightly regulated manner, affecting cancer cell behavior and response to treatment. Building realistic models of the TME is therefore essential for improving our knowledge of cancer pathophysiology and developing more effective therapies. In recent years, there has been growing interest in using precisely-engineered biomaterials and microphysiological systems to create accurate 3D in vitro models of the TME. These models can provide a more physiologically-relevant habitat for studying fundamental aspects of cancer biology and for performing drug screening. Additionally, when combined with organ-on-a-chip technology, these models offer a high degree of biomimicry and control, allowing for a precise recreation and better understanding of key biological functions of the native TME, surpassing what traditional platforms can achieve. In this lecture, I will present our latest works utilizing biomimetic materials and on-chip systems as powerful preclinical tools for engineering realistic in vitro models of the TME to study key aspects of tumorigenesis, for drug screening/discovery purposes, and for disease diagnosis applications.