Mice are the primary preclinical model used in the development of human therapies for cancer. Although rat and dog tumor models exist, their application is limited because of time constraints and lack of manipulable genetics. Consequently, they are used for specific aspects of drug development, primarily toxicological studies. However, the mouse has become the work horse for in vivo studies of compound efficacy and pharmacology. In addition to studying therapeutic efficacy, we propose that mouse models of human cancers can provide ideal settings in which to identify important targets for therapeutic intervention in cancer, and in which to validate the importance of these targets. Moreover, such mouse models provide the ideal setting in which to conduct preclinical studies that will aid in the design of clinical trials and in the selection of patient populations for these trials.
Was this article helpful?