Cell Biology


Protocols in Current Issue
Protocols in Past Issues
0 Q&A 1392 Views Jan 5, 2023

Traditional drug safety assessments often fail to predict complications in humans, especially when the drug targets the immune system. Rodent-based preclinical animal models are often ill-suited for predicting immunotherapy-mediated adverse events in humans, in part because of the fundamental differences in immunological responses between species and the human relevant expression profile of the target antigen, if it is expected to be present in normal, healthy tissue. While human-relevant cell-based models of tissues and organs promise to bridge this gap, conventional in vitro two-dimensional models fail to provide the complexity required to model the biological mechanisms of immunotherapeutic effects. Also, like animal models, they fail to recapitulate physiologically relevant levels and patterns of organ-specific proteins, crucial for capturing pharmacology and safety liabilities. Organ-on-Chip models aim to overcome these limitations by combining micro-engineering with cultured primary human cells to recreate the complex multifactorial microenvironment and functions of native tissues and organs. In this protocol, we show the unprecedented capability of two human Organs-on-Chip models to evaluate the safety profile of T cell–bispecific antibodies (TCBs) targeting tumor antigens. These novel tools broaden the research options available for a mechanistic understanding of engineered therapeutic antibodies and for assessing safety in tissues susceptible to adverse events.

Graphical abstract

Figure 1. Graphical representation of the major steps in target-dependent T cell–bispecific antibodies engagement and immunomodulation, as performed in the Colon Intestine-Chip

0 Q&A 5201 Views Jul 5, 2019
In health, the high-speed airflow associated with cough represents a vital backup mechanism for clearing accumulated mucus from our airways. However, alterations in the mucus layer in cystic fibrosis (CF) and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) leads to the mucus layer adhered to the airway surfaces, representing the nidus of chronic lung infection. To understand what is different about diseased mucus and why cough clearance is defective, there is a need for techniques to quantify the strength of the interactions limiting the ability of airflow to strip mucus from the airway surface (i.e., adhesive strength) or tear mucus apart (i.e., cohesive strength). To overcome the issues with measuring these properties in a soft (i.e., low elastic modulus) mucus layer, we present here novel peel-testing technologies capable of quantifying the mucus adhesive strength on cultured airway cells and cohesive strength of excised mucus samples. While this protocol focuses on measurements of airway mucus, this approach can easily be adapted to measuring adhesive/cohesive properties of other soft biological materials.
0 Q&A 7102 Views Jan 5, 2019
Inflammatory Ly6Chi monocytes can give rise to distinct mononuclear myeloid cells in the tumor microenvironment, such as monocytic myeloid-derived suppressor cells (Mo-MDSC), immature macrophages, M2-like tumor-associated macrophages (TAMs), M1-like TAMs or monocyte-derived dendritic cells (Mo-DCs). This protocol describes a method to assess the fate and recruitment of inflammatory Ly6Chi monocytes in the tumor microenvironment.
0 Q&A 8059 Views Sep 20, 2018
The collagen contraction assay is an in vitro, three-dimensional method to determine the factor(s) affecting the contractile behavior of activated cells such as fibroblasts in either physiological or pathological scenarios. The collagen lattices/hydrogels are seeded with fibroblasts to mimic the interactions between these cells and their surrounding extracellular matrix proteins in the connective tissue. This method is an important platform to assess components as potential therapeutic targets to prevent pathologies such as fibrosis, which are manifestations of hyperactivated fibroblasts. We have described a basic version of this collagen contraction assay, which is amenable to customization using different cell types under diverse experimental conditions.
0 Q&A 11189 Views Sep 5, 2017
One-way mixed lymphocyte reaction (MLR) is a classic tool to measure how T cells react to external stimuli. However, MLR is an in vitro reaction system, which shows different response intensity compared with in vivo trails sometimes due to the lack of cytokines, tissue matrix and other immune response associated factors. The following popliteal lymph node assay (PLNA) protocol is designed to test the T cells antigen-specific reaction in vivo by using ovalbumin (OVA) specific reacted transgenic mouse OT-1 and OT-2.
0 Q&A 10642 Views Aug 5, 2017
The yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae (S. cerevisiae) harboring ade1 or ade2 mutations manifest red colony color phenotype on rich yeast medium YPD. In these mutants, intermediate metabolites of adenine biosynthesis pathway are accumulated. Accumulated intermediates, in the presence of reduced glutathione, are transported to the vacuoles, whereupon the development of the red color phenotype occurs. Here, we describe a method to score for presence of oxidative stress upon expression of amyloid-like proteins that would convert the red phenotype of ade1/ade2 mutant yeast to white. This assay could be a useful tool for screening for drugs with anti-amyloid aggregation or anti-oxidative stress potency.
0 Q&A 8200 Views Mar 20, 2017
We have developed a 3D co-culture system composed of fibroblasts and colorectal cancer cells that enables us to study the desmoplastic reaction. This method also enables us to study the influence of the desmoplastic reaction on the migration of colorectal cancer cells through the surrounding stroma. This protocol has been previously published (Coulson-Thomas et al., 2011) and is described here in more detail.

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