DiscussionNowadays many investigational drugs show insufficient efficacy in clinical trials which lead to their failure due to lacking of information on predictors for effective targeted therapies for subgroups of cancer patients. The High Throughput Biomedicine (HTB) unit at the Institute for Molecular Medicine Finland (FIMM) has developed a screening platform for direct ex vivo drug sensitivity and resistance testing (DSRT). The platform allows testing the functional and phenotypic response of primary cancer cells to a broad range of anti-cancer compounds and therefore identify an individualized cancer therapy profile. The DSRT screening panel contains 450 approved and investigational oncology compounds representing the active substances of almost all FDA-approved small molecule oncology drugs covering all major investigational oncology drug classes. All compounds are tested over a 10,000-fold concentration range to generate quantitative and reliable dose-response data. Utilizing of acoustic dispensing technology with Echo550/525 (Labcyte) provides us opportunity for miniaturization of DSRT platform for 384- or 1536-well plate formats. DSRT platform has been used for screening of acute myeloid leukemia (AML), glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) and granulosa cell tumor (GCT) patient cells which lead to identification of the subgroups of patients that are likely to respond to both novel and previously known therapeutic strategies.
In conclusion, the DSRT platform could be used as a diagnostic tool for personalized therapy treatment and to discover new clinically effective drugs and drug combinations.
HTB unit develops and provides a wide range of miniaturised drug and RNAi high throughput assays.