Cancer Tissue Engineering Collaborative (TEC)
The Cancer Tissue Engineering Collaborative (TEC) Research Program supports the development and characterization of state-of-the-art biomimetic tissue-engineered technologies for cancer research. Collaborative, multidisciplinary projects that engage the fields of regenerative medicine, tissue engineering, biomaterials, and bioengineering with cancer biology will be essential for generating novel experimental models that mimic cancer pathophysiology to elucidate specific cancer phenomena that are otherwise difficult to examine in vivo.
The Cancer TEC Research Program catalyzes the advancement of innovative, well characterized in vitro and ex vivo systems available for cancer research, expands the breadth of these systems to several cancer types, and promotes the exploration of cancer phenomena with biomimetic tissue-engineered systems.
History of Cancer TEC
Three workshops have been sponsored by the NCI to assess the status of tissue-engineered systems in cancer and to identify gaps. In April 2012, a Physical Sciences – Oncology Network (PS-ON) workshop was held to discuss areas where physical sciences principles from tissue engineering and developmental biology could open new avenues in cancer research. Participants highlighted the need for development of synthetic in vitro and ex vivo engineered systems to better probe key factors in tissues and their microenvironment important in cancer. The consensus of the participants was that these factors could be best studied in physiologically relevant and controlled tissue-engineered systems.
To further explore the status of tissue-engineered technologies in cancer, a second targeted PS-ON workshop on Biomimetic Tissue Engineered Systems for Advancing Cancer Research was held in February 2014. The workshop highlighted examples of how tissue-engineered technologies are currently being applied to cancer research to study angiogenesis, migration, and therapeutic resistance. Workshop participants identified areas for future focus based on existing research and gaps in cancer biology.
Finally, in April 2015, a joint workshop was held with the National Science Foundation on Additive Manufacturing for Tumor Engineering. The workshop highlighted several barriers to constructing tissue-engineered systems for cancer research, including the need for their robust pathophysiological characterization. Participants recommended the formation of multidisciplinary partnerships to construct and characterize tissue-engineered models of cancer. It was suggested that characterization of systems could include, but not be limited to, biological comparisons of in vivo and clinical datasets.
Cancer TEC Funding Opportunities and Related Resources
Cancer TEC News
At the 2023 AACR Annual Meeting, Dr. Steven Becker (a DCB Program Director) gave an NCI Meet-the-Expert presentation on TEC and Opportunities for Biomaterials Research. A summary of the talk can be found on Twitter.
Cancer TEC Associate Membership
The goal of the Cancer TEC Associate Membership program is to provide an opportunity for those who are not currently funded by the Cancer TEC program to engage in Cancer TEC activities and potentially form collaborations with Cancer TEC funded investigators. Additional information, including eligibility, expectations of associate members, and the application form, can be found on the Cancer TEC Associate Membership webpage.
Cancer TEC Social Media
TEC research and funding opportunities are shared on Twitter: @NCIPhySci
Contact for Cancer TEC
For additional information about the TEC, please contact Dr. Steven Becker.
|Institution||Principal Investigator(s)||Project Title|
|Boston University||Joe Tien, Celeste Nelson||Engineered Invasive Human Breast Tumors with Integrated Capillaries and Lymphatics|
|Brigham and Women’s Hospital||Ali Khademhosseini, Shiladitya Sengupta||Engineering Personalized Micro-Tumor Ecosystems|
|Harvard University||David Mooney, Jennifer Lewis, F. Stephen Hodi||3D Models of Immunotherapy|
|Massachusetts Institute of Technology||Roger Kamm, David Barbie||Development of Physiologic Tissue Models to Assess Tumor Explant Response to Immune Checkpoint Blockade|