Dynamic CTC phenotypes in metastatic prostate cancer models visualized using magnetic ranking cytometry†
Tumors can shed thousands of cells into the circulation daily. These circulating tumor cells (CTCs) are heterogeneous, and their phenotypes change dynamically. Real-time monitoring of CTC phenotypes is crucial to elucidate the role of CTCs in the metastatic cascade. Here, we monitor phenotypic changes in CTCs in mice xenografted with tumors with varying aggressiveness during cancer progression and a course of chemotherapy to study the metastatic potential of CTCs and changes in the properties of these cells in response to treatment. A new device that enables magnetic ranking cytometry (MagRC) is employed to profile the phenotypic properties of CTCs. Overall, CTCs from metastatic xenografts in mice display dynamic and heterogeneous profiles while non-metastatic models had static profiles. Decreased heterogeneity followed by a reduction in metastasis incidence was observed after a course of chemotherapy administered to highly metastatic xenografts. Phenotypic profiling of CTCs could be employed to monitor disease progression and predict therapeutic responses.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Personalised Medicine: Liquid Biopsy