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Open AccessArticle

Breast Cancer Stem Cell Culture and Enrichment Using Poly(ε-Caprolactone) Scaffolds

New Therapeutic Targets Laboratory (TargetsLab)–Oncology Unit, Department of Medical Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Girona, Girona 17071, Spain
Product, Process and Production Engineering Research Group (GREP), Department of Mechanical Engineering and Industrial Construction, University of Girona, Girona 17071, Spain
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Academic Editors: Chee Kai Chua and Wai Yee Yeong
Molecules 2016, 21(4), 537;
Received: 14 March 2016 / Revised: 20 April 2016 / Accepted: 20 April 2016 / Published: 23 April 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biomaterials and Bioprinting)
The cancer stem cell (CSC) population displays self-renewal capabilities, resistance to conventional therapies, and a tendency to post-treatment recurrence. Increasing knowledge about CSCs’ phenotype and functions is needed to investigate new therapeutic strategies against the CSC population. Here, poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL), a biocompatible polymer free of toxic dye, has been used to fabricate scaffolds, solid structures suitable for 3D cancer cell culture. It has been reported that scaffold cell culture enhances the CSCs population. A RepRap BCN3D+ printer and 3 mm PCL wire were used to fabricate circular scaffolds. PCL design and fabrication parameters were first determined and then optimized considering several measurable variables of the resulting scaffolds. MCF7 breast carcinoma cell line was used to assess scaffolds adequacy for 3D cell culture. To evaluate CSC enrichment, the Mammosphere Forming Index (MFI) was performed in 2D and 3D MCF7 cultures. Results showed that the 60° scaffolds were more suitable for 3D culture than the 45° and 90° ones. Moreover, 3D culture experiments, in adherent and non-adherent conditions, showed a significant increase in MFI compared to 2D cultures (control). Thus, 3D cell culture with PCL scaffolds could be useful to improve cancer cell culture and enrich the CSCs population. View Full-Text
Keywords: breast cancer; cancer stem cell; scaffold; PCL; RepRap; tridimensional cell culture; mammospheres breast cancer; cancer stem cell; scaffold; PCL; RepRap; tridimensional cell culture; mammospheres
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Palomeras, S.; Rabionet, M.; Ferrer, I.; Sarrats, A.; Garcia-Romeu, M.L.; Puig, T.; Ciurana, J. Breast Cancer Stem Cell Culture and Enrichment Using Poly(ε-Caprolactone) Scaffolds. Molecules 2016, 21, 537.

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