Authors Mendoza-Martinez, A. K. ; Lössner, D. ; Mata, A. ; Azevedo, H.
Title Modeling the tumor microenvironment of ovarian cancer: the application of self-assembling biomaterials
Date 16.11.2021
Number 59973
Abstract Ovarian cancer (OvCa) is one of the leading causes of gynecologic malignancies. Despite treatment with surgery and chemotherapy, OvCa disseminates and recurs frequently, reducing the survival rate for patients. There is an urgent need to develop more effective treatment options for women diagnosed with OvCa. The tumor microenvironment (TME) is a key driver of disease progression, metastasis and resistance to treatment. For this reason, 3D models have been designed to represent this specific niche and allow more realistic cell behaviors compared to conventional 2D approaches. In particular, self-assembling peptides represent a promising biomaterial platform to study tumor biology. They form nanofiber networks that resemble the architecture of the extracellular matrix and can be designed to display mechanical properties and biochemical motifs representative of the TME. In this review, we highlight the properties and benefits of emerging 3D platforms used to model the ovarian TME. We also outline the challenges associated with using these 3D systems and provide suggestions for future studies and developments. We conclude that our understanding of OvCa and advances in materials science will progress the engineering of novel 3D approaches, which will enable the development of more effective therapies
Publisher Cancers
Citation Cancers 13 (2021) 5745

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