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Summer Student 2017: Stephanie Lunt

Stephanie Lunt, supervised by Dr Adrian Biddle at the Animal Replacement Centre Queen Mary University of London, used patient cancer samples to identify biomarkers in skin cancer to help replace the use of mice.

Stephanie Lunt slicing human tissue samples

Stephanie Lunt slicing human tissue samples

Melanoma is among the most aggressive cancers, with poor survival and limited treatment options. Cancer stem cells, the sub-population of cancer cells that drive long-term tumour growth, have a heightened resistance to therapy and ability to seed the growths that cause 90% of all cancer deaths.

Identification and characterisation of these cells, so that therapies can be developed to target them, is a priority in cancer research. The majority of research uses human cancer cells that have been transplanted into mice for these investigations.

In her summer project, Stephanie helped validate a method that uses preserved human melanoma specimens, instead of mice. This important validation step is needed to demonstrate the relevance of the animal free cell culture model to human cancer and thereby encourage its expanded use by the scientific community to replace experiments on mice.

Page last modified on June 13, 2019 12:23 pm