ENG ThE CANCER
Cancer has become the third most likely cause of death worldwide. Presently cancer is killing 8.5 million people per year and by 2030, this number is estimated to reach 12 million.
One of the most serious obstacles facing scientists involved in the development and assessment of new anti-cancer drugs and therapies is the failure of preclinical cancer models able to predict, in a reliable way, whether a given drug will have anti-cancer activity and acceptable toxicity in humans.
Most animal models are not representative of human situations and currently, more than 70-80% of cancer research is based on 2D models.
Prof. Rui L. Reis has been working for decades on the development of innovative Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine (TERM) strategies. In his lecture, Prof. Reis will talk about how tissue engineering (TE) can help to solve this situation, by means of creating novel breakthrough and reliable 3D engineered functional cancer disease models that can help to predict the efficacy of novel cancer drugs and potential therapies, avoiding a range of unnecessary animal tests, and preclinical and clinical trials of doomed to fail new drugs.
His research aims to create a unique TE based technological platform to generate 3D microenvironments, which can be used as functional disease models for screening cancer drugs that are under development by the pharmaceutical industry and novel therapies that are being tested by the medical community.