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Kalpana Katti1 MD Shahjahan Molla1 Sumanta Kar1 Dinesh Katti1

1, North Dakota State University, Fargo, North Dakota, United States


Tissue engineering through use of scaffolds is a very promising technology for replacement of tissues In regenerative medicine. A unique nanoclay based scaffold that enables mineralization of hydroxyapatite inside nanoclay galleries provides structural support and enables growth, proliferation and differentiation of human mesenchymal cells to form hierarchical mineralized collagen and ECM formation mimicking bone which is useful for regenerative medicine. In addition, it is known that breast cancer and prostate cancer have the propensity to metastasize to bone in the human body. The cancer at this stage of metastasis is incurable. Here we describe the use of tissue engineered bone as a humanoid testbed to create cancer tumors in vitro. We also demonstrate that this engineered test-bed duplicates the last stage of cancer metastasis as indicated by the gene expression and immunocytochemistry analysis of the tumors generated in the testbed. We also report the use of unique nanoindentation methodology to obtain elastic properties of tumors as they grow at the humanoid metastasis stage inside the bone scaffolds. FTIR experiments are also conducted during progression of tumor at metastasis and unique signatures of the DNA and protein contents during cancer progression are reported. Nanomechanical experiments on live tumors during their evolution and growth is related to the gene expression studies to bring mechanobiology as a new biomarker of the cancer progression. The engineering test-bed can be used for personalized medicine as well as a screening tool for new anti-cancer drugs. Regenerative medicine thus provides unique opportunities to evaluate cancer metastasis.

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