Wendel, J.R.H.; Wang, X.; Smith, L.J.; Hawkins, S.M. Three-Dimensional Biofabrication Models of Endometriosis and the Endometriotic Microenvironment. Biomedicines2020, 8, 525.
Wendel, J.R.H.; Wang, X.; Smith, L.J.; Hawkins, S.M. Three-Dimensional Biofabrication Models of Endometriosis and the Endometriotic Microenvironment. Biomedicines 2020, 8, 525.
Endometriosis occurs when endometrial-like tissue grows outside the uterine cavity, leading to pelvic pain, infertility, and increased risk of ovarian cancer. The present study describes the optimization and characterization of cellular spheroids as building blocks for Kenzan scaffold-free method biofabrication and proof-of-concept models of endometriosis and the endometriotic microenvironment. The spheroid building blocks must be a specific diameter (~500 m), compact, round, and smooth to withstand Kenzan biofabrication. Under optimized spheroid conditions for biofabrication, the endometriotic epithelial-like cell line, 12Z, expressed high levels of estrogen-related genes and secreted high amounts of endometriotic inflammatory factors that were independent of TNF stimulation. Heterotypic spheroids, composed of 12Z and T-HESC, an immortalized endometrial stromal cell line, self-assembled into a biologically relevant pattern, consisting of epithelial cells on the outside of the spheroids and stromal cells in the core. 12Z spheroids were biofabricated into large three-dimensional constructs alone, with HEYA8 spheroids, or as heterotypic spheroids with T-HESC. These three-dimensional biofabricated constructs containing multiple monotypic or heterotypic spheroids represent the first scaffold-free biofabricated in vitro models of endometriosis and the endometriotic microenvironment. These efficient and innovative models will allow us to study the complex interactions of multiple cell types within a biologically relevant microenvironment.
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