Development of a rabbit human glioblastoma model for testing of endovascular selective intra-arterial infusion (ESIA) of novel stem cell-based therapeutics

Peter Kan, Visish M. Srinivasan, Joy Gumin, Roberto Garcia, Stephen R. Chen, Jeremiah N. Johnson, Dalis E. Collins, Melissa M. Chen, Daniel Ledbetter, Jason Huse, Zean Aaron Evan Luna, Ariadna Robledo, Viren Vasandani, Abhijit Rao, Sanjay K. Singh, Elizabeth J. Shpall, Juan Fueyo, Candelaria Gomez-Manzano, Frederick F. Lang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Background: Endovascular selective intra-arterial (ESIA) infusion of cellular oncotherapeutics is a rapidly evolving strategy for treating glioblastoma. Evaluation of ESIA infusion requires a unique animal model. Our goal was to create a rabbit human GBM model to test IA infusions of cellular therapies and to test its usefulness by employing clinical-grade microcatheters and infusion methods to deliver mesenchymal stem cells loaded with an oncolytic adenovirus, Delta-24-RGD (MSC-D24). Methods: Rabbits were immunosuppressed with mycophenolate mofetil, dexamethasone, and tacrolimus. They underwent stereotactic xenoimplantation of human GBM cell lines (U87, MDA-GSC-17, and MDA-GSC-8-11) into the right frontal lobe. Tumor formation was confirmed on magnetic resonance imaging, histologic, and immunohistochemistry analysis. Selective microcatheter infusion of MSC-D24 was performed via the ipsilateral internal carotid artery to assess model utility and the efficacy and safety of this approach. Results: Twenty-five rabbits were implanted (18 with U87, 2 MDA-GSC-17, and 5 MDA-GSC-8-11). Tumors formed in 68% of rabbits (77.8% for U87, 50.0% for MDA-GSC-17, and 40.0% for MDA-GSC-8-11). On MRI, the tumors were hyperintense on T2-weighted image with variable enhancement (evidence of blood brain barrier breakdown). Histologically, tumors showed phenotypic traits of human GBM including varying levels of vascularity. ESIA infusion into the distal internal carotid artery of 2 ml of MSCs-D24 (107 cells) was safe in the model. Examination of post infusion specimens documented that MSCs-D24 homed to the implanted tumor at 24 hours. Conclusions: The intracranial immunosuppressed rabbit human GBM model allows testing of ESIA infusion of novel therapeutics (eg, MSC-D24) in a clinically relevant fashion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)127-136
Number of pages10
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2024
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cancer Research


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