Nat Rev Cancer 2017 04 20;17(4):254-268. Epub 2017 Jan 20.
EurOPDX Consortium and are at the Candiolo Cancer Institute IRCCS and Department of Oncology, University of Torino, 10060 Candiolo, Torino, Italy.
Patient-derived xenografts (PDXs) have emerged as an important platform to elucidate new treatments and biomarkers in oncology. PDX models are used to address clinically relevant questions, including the contribution of tumour heterogeneity to therapeutic responsiveness, the patterns of cancer evolutionary dynamics during tumour progression and under drug pressure, and the mechanisms of resistance to treatment. The ability of PDX models to predict clinical outcomes is being improved through mouse humanization strategies and the implementation of co-clinical trials, within which patients and PDXs reciprocally inform therapeutic decisions. This Opinion article discusses aspects of PDX modelling that are relevant to these questions and highlights the merits of shared PDX resources to advance cancer medicine from the perspective of EurOPDX, an international initiative devoted to PDX-based research.