In Vitro modeling of cancerous neural invasion: The dorsal root ganglion model

Shorook Na’ara, Ziv Gil, Moran Amit

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


One way that solid tumors disseminate is through neural invasion. This route is well-known in cancers of the head and neck, prostate, and pancreas. These neurotropic cancer cells have a unique ability to migrate unidirectionally along nerves towards the central nervous system (CNS). The dorsal root ganglia (DRG)/cancer cell model is a three dimensional (3D) in vitro model frequently used for studying the interaction between neural stroma and cancer cells. In this model, mouse or human cancer cell lines are grown in ECM adjacent to preparations of freshly dissociated cultured DRG. In this article, the DRG isolation protocol from mice, and implantation in petri dishes for co-culturing with pancreatic cancer cells are demonstrated. Five days after implantation, the cancer cells made contact with the DRG neurites. Later, these cells formed bridgeheads to facilitate more extensive polarized, neurotropic migration of cancer cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere52990
JournalJournal of Visualized Experiments
Issue number110
StatePublished - Apr 12 2016


  • Cells
  • Dorsal root ganglia (DRG)
  • Invasion
  • Issue 110
  • Neural
  • Neuroscience
  • Neurotropic
  • Pancreas
  • Prostate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)


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