Development of clinically relevant in vivo metastasis models using human bone discs and breast cancer patient-derived xenografts
Alférez, Denis G
Clarke, Robert B
AffiliationDepartment of Oncology and Metabolism, Mellanby Centre for Bone Research, University of Sheffield, Beech Hill Road, Sheffield, S10 2RX
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AbstractBACKGROUND: Late-stage breast cancer preferentially metastasises to bone; despite advances in targeted therapies, this condition remains incurable. The lack of clinically relevant models for studying breast cancer metastasis to a human bone microenvironment has stunted the development of effective treatments for this condition. To address this problem, we have developed humanised mouse models in which breast cancer patient-derived xenografts (PDXs) metastasise to human bone implants with low variability and high frequency. METHODS: To model the human bone environment, bone discs from femoral heads of patients undergoing hip replacement surgery were implanted subcutaneously into NOD/SCID mice. For metastasis studies, 7 patient-derived xenograft tumours (PDX: BB3RC32, ER+ PR+ HER2-; BB2RC08, ER+ PR+ ER2-; BB6RC37, ER- PR- HER2- and BB6RC39, ER+ PR+ HER2+), MDA-MB-231-luc2, T47D-luc2 or MCF7-Luc2 cells were injected into the 4th mammary ducts and metastases monitored by luciferase imaging and confirmed on histological sections. Bone integrity, viability and vascularisation were assessed by uCT, calcein uptake and histomorphometry. Expression profiling of genes/proteins during different stages of metastasis were assessed by whole genome Affymetrix array, real-time PCR and immunohistochemistry. Importance of IL-1 was confirmed following anakinra treatment. RESULTS: Implantation of femoral bone provided a metabolically active, human-specific site for tumour cells to metastasise to. After 4 weeks, bone implants were re-vascularised and demonstrated active bone remodelling (as evidenced by the presence of osteoclasts, osteoblasts and calcein uptake). Restricting bone implants to the use of subchondral bone and introduction of cancer cells via intraductal injection maximised metastasis to human bone implants. MDA-MB-231 cells specifically metastasised to human bone (70% metastases) whereas T47D, MCF7, BB3RC32, BB2RC08, and BB6RC37 cells metastasised to both human bone and mouse bones. Importantly, human bone was the preferred metastatic site especially from ER+ PDX (100% metastasis human bone compared with 20-75% to mouse bone), whereas ER-ve PDX developed metastases in 20% of human and 20% of mouse bone. Breast cancer cells underwent a series of molecular changes as they progressed from primary tumours to bone metastasis including altered expression of IL-1B, IL-1R1, S100A4, CTSK, SPP1 and RANK. Inhibiting IL-1B signalling significantly reduced bone metastasis. CONCLUSIONS: Our reliable and clinically relevant humanised mouse models provide significant advancements in modelling of breast cancer bone metastasis.
CitationLefley D, Howard F, Arshad F, Bradbury S, Brown H, Tulotta C, et al. Development of clinically relevant in vivo metastasis models using human bone discs and breast cancer patient-derived xenografts. Breast Cancer Res. 2019;21(1):130.
JournalBreast cancer research
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