On-site cytology for development of patient-derived three-dimensional organoid cultures - A pilot study

Verena Sailer, Chantal Pauli, Elyze C. Merzier, Juan Miguel Mosquera, Himisha Beltran, Mark A. Rubin, Rema A. Rao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Background/Aim: Development of patient-derived three-dimensional (3D) organoid cultures is an emerging technique in the field of precision oncology. We aimed to integrate on-site adequacy evaluation using cytology into the tumor organoid development workflow to ensure precise characterization and growth of these cultures. Patients and Methods: Cancer patients were consented to a Precision Medicine trial. Fresh tissue was procured for genomic analyses as well as organoid development. Fresh tissue destined for organoid development was evaluated by preparing on-site cytology smears to ensure that only lesional tissue would be submitted for further cell culture work. Results: Cytology preparations were made from 64 different tumor samples and evaluated prior to tissue submission for organoid development. In 53 (82.2%) of those tumor samples, the cytology preparation was diagnostic, thus providing adequate material for organoid development. Conclusion: Characterizing the tissue prior to submission for organoid development ensures submission of lesional tissue only. Furthermore, it is a cost-effective method that can help document patient diagnosis. This can be of importance in biopsies, since the tissue submitted for organoid development cannot be retrieved for clinical diagnosis afterwards. Our findings in this pilot study led to the implementation of on-site cytological evaluation in the tumor organoid development workflow at the Englander Institute for Precision Medicine, NY, USA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1569-1573
Number of pages5
JournalAnticancer Research
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Cytology
  • DNA sequencing
  • Drug screening
  • Organoids
  • Precision medicine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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