How to improve humanized mouse models for head and neck cancer research

mouse models for head and neck cancer research

Cancer can be cured if we never stop believing in hope as miracles happen each and every day.

Healthy cells in our bodies divide and replace themselves in a controlled fashion throughout our lives. Cancer starts when a cell is somehow altered so that it gets multiplied out of control. A tumor is a mass composed of such numerous abnormal cells which are mostly cancerous but few are non-cancerous. The most common type of cancer is the head and neck cancer.

Head and neck cancer

Cancers that are collectively known as head and neck cancer usually begin in the squamous cell carcinomas that line the surfaces of the head and neck like inside the mouth, nose or throat. They are caused by many different factors like:

  • Alcohol and tobacco use
  • Human Papillomavirus infection
  • Paan (Betel quid)
  • Preserved or salted foods
  • Oral health
  • Occupational exposure
  • Radiation exposure, etc

This shows that head and neck cancers are a very common type of cancer and are very harmful if not diagnosed early but to understand cancer in a detailed manner the researchers use mouse models for head and neck cancer research.

Mouse models used in cancer research

Cancer is a highly researched disease. Thousands of laboratory mouse are used to research about cancer and patients are updated with headlines of innovations and new discoveries.

For a quick guide to the patients, three mouse models are used which have tremendous variations and it can be hard to understand the details but due to each models strengths and weaknesses they are researched and made clear to the patients about the treatment of the head and neck cancer that affects the human body.

Why mice for human head and neck cancer research?

If a new anti-cancer drug shows a promising result in a dish then the next step comes to test it immediately on mice. This system works well with the drugs that directly attract cancer, but it gets broken down with immunotherapies.

The reason to be given is that samples of human cancer can only grow in a mouse with few suppressed immune systems. And if this immune system has suppressed in a mouse model then there is no other immune system to suppress against cancer.

Improved humanized mouse models for head and neck cancer research

To improve head and neck cancer research humanized mice are used to understand it more properly. Basically, a human immune system is transplanted into the mice along with the human tumor which will allow the researchers to test the ability of immunotherapies against human cancer in a mouse.

The process is a bit like a bone marrow transplant where not only human hematopoietic system and progenitor cells (HSPCs) but also mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) is used to improve the cancer test results in these models.

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Better research will lead to better treatment

In recent days, the doctors or the researchers are trying to move step by step ahead so that they can invent more improved results with their humanized models on the research of head and neck cancer and how an immunotherapy might work with a specific patient to guide them towards a better treatment decision.

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