Special Issue "Animal Modeling in Cancer"

A special issue of Genes (ISSN 2073-4425). This special issue belongs to the section "Molecular Genetics and Genomics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 August 2019).

Special Issue Editor

Collection Editor
Dr. Vladimir Korinek Website E-Mail
Institute of Molecular Genetics of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Department of Cell and Developmental Biology, Prague, Czech Republic
Interests: Cell biology, genetics, gastrointestinal tract, intestinal epithelium, stem cells, colorectal cancer, Wnt signaling, TCF/LEF proteins, mouse models, gene targeting

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The understanding of pathological mechanisms involved in human diseases and their possible treatment has been historically based on comparative analysis of diverse animal species that share similar genetic, physiological and behavioral composition. The ancient Greeks were the first to use animals as models for anatomy and physiology, and this was consequently adopted by other cultures and led to important discoveries in many biomedical disciplines.

Currently, there is a high interest in gene manipulation techniques as they have become a fundamental research tool to generate organisms that simulate diseases characteristics on which new research and treatments can be applied. Over the years, a large availability of methods to generate animal models has been developed including conditional alleles production, gene knock-ins, and RNA interference technologies that greatly contributed to our knowledge why and how diseases are initiated, developed, and, eventually, cured.

In the recent years, there have been many efforts to understand and fight cancer through new revolutionary personalized treatments and wider screenings that help diagnose and treat cancer effectively. A fundamental part of this effort is to develop suitable cancer animal models that simulate the different disease variants and their progression. Ranging from tumor-derived xenografts to genetically engineered models, a wide variety of systems are applied for this purpose and many technological breakthroughs are changing the way that cancer is studied and analysed.

In this Special Issue, we would like to collect a set of research articles and reviews that focus on the generation of cancer animal models that are used to understand the disease and contribute to design and test new drugs for cancer prevention or treatment in mice and in other vertebrate model organisms.

Dr. Vladimír Kořínek
Collection Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Genes is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • cancer
  • mouse models
  • non-mouse models
  • gene editing
  • stem cells
  • solid tumors
  • hematologic malignancies

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Review

Open AccessReview
Effects of Radiation Therapy on Neural Stem Cells
Genes 2019, 10(9), 640; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes10090640 - 24 Aug 2019
Abstract
Brain and nervous system cancers in children represent the second most common neoplasia after leukemia. Radiotherapy plays a significant role in cancer treatment; however, the use of such therapy is not without devastating side effects. The impact of radiation-induced damage to the brain [...] Read more.
Brain and nervous system cancers in children represent the second most common neoplasia after leukemia. Radiotherapy plays a significant role in cancer treatment; however, the use of such therapy is not without devastating side effects. The impact of radiation-induced damage to the brain is multifactorial, but the damage to neural stem cell populations seems to play a key role. The brain contains pools of regenerative neural stem cells that reside in specialized neurogenic niches and can generate new neurons. In this review, we describe the advances in radiotherapy techniques that protect neural stem cell compartments, and subsequently limit and prevent the occurrence and development of side effects. We also summarize the current knowledge about neural stem cells and the molecular mechanisms underlying changes in neural stem cell niches after brain radiotherapy. Strategies used to minimize radiation-related damages, as well as new challenges in the treatment of brain tumors are also discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Animal Modeling in Cancer)
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Open AccessReview
A Critical Review of Animal Models Used in Acute Myeloid Leukemia Pathophysiology
Genes 2019, 10(8), 614; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes10080614 - 13 Aug 2019
Abstract
Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is one of the most frequent, complex, and heterogeneous hematological malignancies. AML prognosis largely depends on acquired cytogenetic, epigenetic, and molecular abnormalities. Despite the improvement in understanding the biology of AML, survival rates remain quite low. Animal models offer [...] Read more.
Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is one of the most frequent, complex, and heterogeneous hematological malignancies. AML prognosis largely depends on acquired cytogenetic, epigenetic, and molecular abnormalities. Despite the improvement in understanding the biology of AML, survival rates remain quite low. Animal models offer a valuable tool to recapitulate different AML subtypes, and to assess the potential role of novel and known mutations in disease progression. This review provides a comprehensive and critical overview of select available AML animal models. These include the non-mammalian Zebrafish and Drosophila models as well as the mammalian rodent systems, comprising rats and mice. The suitability of each animal model, its contribution to the advancement of knowledge in AML pathophysiology and treatment, as well as its advantages and limitations are discussed. Despite some limitations, animal models represent a powerful approach to assess toxicity, and permit the design of new therapeutic strategies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Animal Modeling in Cancer)
Open AccessReview
Rodent Models Assessing Mammary Tumor Prevention by Soy or Soy Isoflavones
Genes 2019, 10(8), 566; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes10080566 - 26 Jul 2019
Abstract
While epidemiological studies performed in Asian countries generally show that high levels of dietary soy are associated with reduced breast cancer risk, studies in Western countries have typically failed to show this correlation. In an attempt to model the preventative actions of soy [...] Read more.
While epidemiological studies performed in Asian countries generally show that high levels of dietary soy are associated with reduced breast cancer risk, studies in Western countries have typically failed to show this correlation. In an attempt to model the preventative actions of soy on mammary tumor development, rodent models have been employed. Thirty-four studies were identified that evaluated the impact of soy products or purified soy isoflavones on mammary tumor initiation (studies evaluating established mammary tumors or mammary tumor cell lines were not included) and these studies were separated into mammary tumors induced by chemical carcinogens or transgenic expression of oncogenes based on the timing of soy administration. Regardless of when soy-based diets or purified isoflavones were administered, no consistent protective effects were observed in either carcinogen-induced or oncogene-induced mammary tumors. While some studies demonstrated that soy or purified isoflavones could reduce mammary tumor incidence, other studies showed either no effect or tumor promoting effects of soy products or isoflavones. Most importantly, only five studies found a decrease in mammary tumor incidence and six studies observed a decrease in tumor multiplicity, two relevant measures of the tumor preventative effects of soy or isoflavones. The variable outcomes of the studies examined were not completely surprising given that few studies employed the same experimental design. Future studies should be carefully designed to more accurately emulate soy consumption observed in Asian cultures including lifetime exposure to less refined soy products and potentially the incorporation of multigenerational feeding studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Animal Modeling in Cancer)
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