Cancer Model

Undoubtedly, cancer research has risen to become the top priority in biomedicine. The mouse model plays an important role in the research on the genesis and development of tumor, as well as the research and development of cancer drugs. Animal cancer models allow researchers to evaluate the efficacy of anti-cancer immunotherapies. They also serve as screening models for anti-cancer drugs and support research on tumorigenesis and metastasis. Shanghai Model Organisms provides a variety of custom-engineered mouse cancer models to meet different research needs.

Animal cancer models can be used to:

  • Study the intrinsic mechanisms involved in tumorigenesis, cancer development and metastasis

  • Evaluate the efficacy of anti-cancer immunotherapies

  • Serve as screening models for anti-cancer drugs


Shanghai Model Organisms provides a variety of custom-engineered mouse cancer models to meet different research needs.



Genetically-engineered cancer mouse model

Spontaneous tumor mouse models are generated from genetically-engineered mice with tumor-related gene expression that has been up- or down-regulated, or their tumor-related gene deleted. Spontaneous models are mainly used for the study of genesis, development and mechanism of tumors. They can also be used for anti-cancer drugs screening.


In general, genetically-engineered mouse models of cancer are established using the following two strategies:

Oncogene Overexpression or Disease-causing Mutations

Examples include:   Myc conditional overexpression、Apcmin、Kras(G12D)、KPC model 、etc.

Loss of Function in Tumor Suppression Genes

Examples include: P53 KO、P53 CKO、Pten KO、Pten CKOSmad4 CKORb1 CKOBrca1 CKO  etc.

Apart from the above-mentioned mouse models, Shanghai Model Organisms will continue to introduce additional genetically-engineered mouse models of cancer. More updates will follow.


Please contact our technical consultants if you have obtained relevant candidate genes from clinical data or in vitro experiments. We look forward to contributing our services and expertise to your project.




Liver cancer patient-derived xenograft (PDX) model

Patient-derived Xenografts (PDX) are advanced preclinical oncology model for drug development. It offers a far better alternative for preclinical drug evaluation as compared to the conventional cell line-derived xenograft model.

  • By maintaining genotypic and phenotypic diversity of patient tumor tissues, PDX is capable of capturing a more faithful representation of the human tumor's characteristics.

  • PDX preserves tumor stroma and tumor microenvironments.

  • Compared with cancer cell lines, PDX offers a more faithful representation of the mechanisms of tumor genesis and development.

  • Compared with cancer cell lines, PDX offers a better reflection of cancer patients' drug sensitivity and tolerance levels during drug screening.


Applications include:

  • Screening and biomarker development of anti-cancer drugs

  • Co-clinical trials of anti-cancer drugs

  • Precision medicine

  • Study on tumor mechanisms


Having successfully established more than 60 types of liver cancer PDX models, Shanghai Model Organisms has identified their key characteristics through the analysis of genomics, histopathology, growth characteristics, drug responses to standard treatments, etc. Our research has demonstrated that PDX is capable of replicating the heterogeneity of patient tumors in various aspects, including their molecular, genetic and histological complexities. Our range of PDX models allows highly-efficient testing and analysis of drug efficacy in different clinical settings. PDX tumors collected from our PDX models can also be used in preclinical trials to facilitate drug development by mimicking Phase II patient tumor sizes.


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Fig 1. Tumor growth curves of liver cancer PDX models after treatment with different drug groups.



Cancer cell line-derived xenograft (CDX) model

A cancer cell line was inoculated into an immunodeficient mouse to generate a tumor-bearing mouse model.


Using A549 lung cancer cell line as an example, A549 cells were collected in the log phase of growth and adjusted to a density of 5*107/ml before 100 μl was inoculated into the right hind leg of mice subcutaneously. Day 0 is the time of subcutaneous inoculation. Tumor growth at the inoculation site was observed daily and measurements were taken twice a week using vernier calipers. Tumor volume was calculated using the formula: tumor volume V=(D*d2) /2, where D and d are the longest and shortest diameter, respectively. Researchers stopped taking measurement when the mouse tumor grew to 1000 mm3.

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Fig 2. Analysis of tumorigenicity of normal wild-type mice and three different immunodeficient mice inoculated with A549 tumor cells A: Changes in tumor volume in tumor-bearing mice of different background strains (n=7). Day 0 is the time of subcutaneous inoculation in mice. Measurements were taken twice a week after tumorigenesis, up to Day 40. HE stained sections of tumor tissues from mice of different background strains.


In the above experiments, Rag1 knockout immunodeficient mice (NM-KO-00069) and Rag2 knockout immunodeficient mice (NM-KO-00070) were generated by Shanghai Model Organisms.


Apart from the aforementioned immunodeficient mice, severe immunodeficient (M-NSG) mice

independently-developed by Shanghai Model Organisms can be used to establish humanized mice, xenografts, immunologic reconstitution, etc.

View more immunodeficient mouse strains.


Click here to learn more about our Cancer Cell line-derived Xenograft (CDX) Model services.



Carcinogen-induced mouse model

Diethylnitrosamine (DEN) is highly toxic to humans and animals. The injection or oral administration of the smallest quantities of DEN can result in severe liver damage. Due to its consistency in inducing hepatic lesions in rodents, DEN is commonly used to generate rodent models of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Mice develop liver damage after DEN administration, which leads to cirrhosis and tumors. Hence the DEN mouse model is one of the ideal models for the research on the pathogenesis of hepatic cancer.


View details on DEN-induced mouse models of HCC provided by Shanghai Model Organisms.




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