The top 5 of critical questions and answers in 3D cell culture

3D cell culture is becoming more and more prominent in pre-clinical research, compound testing and high-throughput or –content screening. And the reasons are obvious: in their natural environment, cells do not grow on a hard and flat substrate but in a 3-dimensional meshwork in which they interact with neighbouring cells in all dimensions. Consequently, cells behave more naturally, hence physiologically relevant, in an ex vivo system that mimics their natural environment as closely as possible.

However, when adapting cell culture conditions from standard classical flat cultures to 3D, there are a couple of considerations to observe.
Here are the top 5:
1. Do all cells grow in 3D?
Unfortunately, not all the cells that can be cultivated in classical 2D cell cultures can that easily be transferred to 3D. In fact, a substantial faction of cancer cell lines, for example, do not easily grow in 3D (up to 40%) and form loose or no 3D structures at all.

In these cases, 3D CoSeedis™ offers a unique advantage over comparable other technologies: its proprietary design pushes and primes cells into a 3D cell fate. And that’s true also for cells that would otherwise not do so in technologies such as hanging drop or liquid overlay.
2. Is it possible to grow 3-dimensional structures that consist of multiple cell types?
In a lot of scenarios, it is indeed desirable to have spheroids or organoids that consist of multiple cell types. And it is, of course, possible to mix up various cells types to grow such mixed structures.
However, 3D CoSeedis™ offers even more: its unique distance co-culture feature offers the possibility to also address organ-to-organ communication. In other words, 3D CoSeedis™ allows to investigate communication between cells that do NOT touch each other directly but exchange information of long distances nevertheless. And yet, due to 3D CoSeedis™ modular set-up each 3D population of cells can be analysed individually after the experiment.
3. How can 3D cell structures be analysed?
The analysis of spheroids/organoids/micro-tumours may, in some systems, be cumbersome, fiddley and tiresome. Not so in 3D CoSeedis™! The system offers unprecedented in chip analysis methods that eliminate the handling of individual 3D structures altogether:

a) Paraffin or cryo-embedding can be performed in one single step

b) Live-cell imaging, fluorescent of standard can be done in chip

c) Real-time growth-monitoring – easy and in chip

d) Whole-mount staining – in chip

e) Medium, buffer and fixative – it can all be added in chip without loss of or damage to 3D structures
4. What about long term studies?
A lot of 3D systems suffer from the limitations in maintaining 3D cultures over prolonged periods of time. Here, 3D CoSeedis™ offers a real game-changing advantage. With 3D CoSeedis™ 3D cultures can be maintained up to 10 weeks in culture. This is mainly due to:

a) No starvation effects of the 3D cultures due to a 360° supply of medium and oxygen.

b) Repetitive media change is possible and easy to perform.

c) Physiological micro-environment is maintained even during media changes.

d) Less limiting size restrictions compared to other systems.
5. Where do I get support or advice with my cell culture work?
abc biopply not only provides 3D CoSeedis™ as a revolutionary new platform in 3D cell culture, we also offer comprehensive laboratory services. These range from:

a) Support and trouble-shooting services

b) Cell culture services to design and set-up 3D single or multi cellular systems – tell us what you want and receive your system and protocols ready-to-use

c) Full-scale 3D service: design, set-up, analysis - tell us what you need, we do the rest and deliver you the report
Interested? Have you found an answer to your questions? Would you like to discuss your requirements in further details? I am looking forward to receiving your call.

abc biopply laboratory services
– it’s not cells, it’s not 3D systems – it’s results!

   Best regards

   Marco Leu, PhD
   Sales & Operation
   abc biopply ag

   Direct Email / Phone +41 (0)79 834 95 56


Back to overview

Contact us