Patient-derived xenograft cryopreservation and reanimation outcomes are dependent on cryoprotectant type

Tommy Ivanics, John R. Bergquist, Gang Liu, Michael P. Kim, Yaan Kang, Matthew H. Katz, Mayrim V.Rios Perez, Ryan M. Thomas, Jason B. Fleming, Mark J. Truty

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Patient-derived xenografts (PDX) are being increasingly utilized in preclinical oncologic research. Maintaining large colonies of early generation tumor-bearing mice is impractical and cost-prohibitive. Optimal methods for efficient long-term cryopreservation and subsequent reanimation of PDX tumors are critical to any viable PDX program. We sought to compare the performance of “Standard” and “Specialized” cryoprotectant media on various cryopreservation and reanimation outcomes in PDX tumors. Standard (10% DMSO media) and Specialized (Cryostor®) media were compared between overall and matched PDX tumors. Primary outcome was reanimation engraftment efficiency (REE). Secondary outcomes included time to tumor formation (TTF), time to harvest (TTH), and potential loss of unique PDX lines. Overall 57 unique PDX tumors underwent 484 reanimation engraftment attempts after previous cryopreservation. There were 10 unique PDX tumors cryopreserved with Standard (71 attempts), 40 with Specialized (272 attempts), and 7 with both (141 attempts). Median frozen time of reanimated tumors was 29 weeks (max. 177). Tumor pathology, original primary PDX growth rates, frozen storage times, and number of implantations per PDX model were similar between cryoprotectant groups. Specialized media resulted in superior REE (overall: 82 vs. 39%, p < 0.0001; matched: 97 vs. 36%, p < 0.0001; >52 weeks cryostorage: 59 vs. 9%, p < 0.0001), shorter TTF (overall 24 vs. 54 days, p = 0.0051; matched 18 vs. 53 days, p = 0.0013) and shorter TTH (overall: 64 vs. 89 days, p = 0.009; matched: 47 vs. 88 days, p = 0.0005) compared to Standard. Specialized media demonstrated improved REE with extended duration cryostorage (p = 0.048) compared to Standard. Potential loss of unique PDX lines was lower with Specialized media (9 vs. 35%, p = 0.017). In conclusion, cryopreservation with a specialized cryoprotectant appears superior to traditional laboratory-based media and can be performed with reliable reanimation even after extended cryostorage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)947-956
Number of pages10
JournalLaboratory Investigation
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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