What is PDX?
PDX models are increasingly being recognized as clinically more relevant models to identify phenotype-genotype association in patient tumors, and to discover biomarkers of drug response and resistance. During early passages in immune deficient mouse hosts, PDXs mirror closely the histopathological features and genetic profiles of the original patient tumors.
While cancer was once thought of as a single disease that affected many different parts of the body, researchers now know that there are differences in the DNA makeup of cancer cells of each patient and that changes in the cancer’s DNA can cause each cancer to have a unique behaviour. That’s why two patients who have cancer in the same part of the body may respond differently to the same treatment. Testing for mutations in cancer cells is known as molecular profiling.
Why is a PDX Core Important?
Due to the high cost of model establishment, experimentation, and quality control protocols, there are ongoing efforts to unify PDX resources and processes by forming consortiums. Examples include EurOPDX, NCI-DCTD Repository, Cancer Research UK. Other labs have also partnered with industry, e.g. Jackson Lab, Horizon Discovery.