The extracellular matrix (ECM) serves as an important biophysical scaffold for regulating cell growth and function. Traditionally, purified ECM proteins (collagen, laminin) are commonly used for 2D or monolayer cell culture applications.
Endocrine Disruptors (ED) are “exogenous substances or mixtures that alter the function of the endocrine system and consequently cause adverse health effects in an intact organism, its progeny or (sub)populations”.1 ED vary by chemical class and are used in a variety of applications.
For many decades, oncology research and drug screening programs have relied upon 2D or monolayer culture systems of established tumor cell lines. Unfortunately, these flat biology or homogenous tumor models do not represent the complex cell-cell and cell-matrix biology that are found in cancer patients.
One of the most promising advances in science has been the use of stem cells in research and the treatment of disease. In general, stem cells are cells that can be programmed to differentiate into many different types of cells. They also have the ability to “renew” or make copies of themselves.
Designing a thoughtful and well-planned experiment can be a challenge. The overall aim is to lessen the experimental process variability to maximize the detection of the biological variability. Analyzing biological variability is a stalwart focus of personalized medicine.