Cancer Res Treat.  2018 Jan;50(1):1-10. 10.4143/crt.2017.307.

The Generation and Application of Patient-Derived Xenograft Model for Cancer Research

  • 1Department of Biomedical Sciences, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Asan Institute for Life Science, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


Establishing an appropriate preclinical model is crucial for translational cancer research. The most common way that has been adopted by far is grafting cancer cell lines, derived from patients. Although this xenograft model is easy to generate, but has several limitations because this cancer model could not represent the unique features of each cancer patient sufficiently. Moreover, accumulating evidences demonstrate cancer is a highly heterogeneous disease so that a tumor is comprised of cancer cells with diverse characteristics. In attempt to avoid these discrepancies between xenograft model and patients' tumor, a patient-derived xenograft (PDX) model has been actively generated and applied. The PDX model can be developed by the implantation of cancerous tissue from a patient's tumor into an immune-deficient mouse directly, thereby it preserves both cell-cell interactions and tumor microenvironment. In addition, the PDX model has shown advantages as a preclinical model in drug screening, biomarker development and co-clinical trial. In this review, we will summarize the methodology and applications of PDX in detail, and cover critical issues for the development of this model for preclinical research.


Patient derived xenograft; Preclinical model; Immune deficient mouse; Personalized medicine

MeSH Terms

Cell Line
Drug Evaluation, Preclinical
Precision Medicine
Tumor Microenvironment
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