Foto av Atena Malakpour Permlid

Atena Malakpour Permlid

Research and Teaching Assistant, Knuten till universitetet

Personlig profil


I am from the northern part of Iran, near the coast of the Caspian Sea. I have always been fascinated by the field of Biology.  I have a master degree in molecular cell biology from Lund University, gratuated in 2013. My motivation for being a part of this field as molecular-based biologist lies in the fact that it is a foundation of our capability to treat almost all human diseases. I got the opportunity to work with some new natural-based anti-cancer compounds and their inhibitory effect on NF-κB signaling pathway in breast cancer cells during my master studies. I was accepted as a PhD dpctoral researcher under the supervision of professor Stina Oredsson and Per Fredrik Johansson at Biology department, Lund University in 2016.

Recent findings have shown that cells often exhibit different behaviour when they are separated from their native three dimensional (3D) tissues and confined to a monolayer cell cultures (2D). The development of complex synthetic 3D cell culture models in vitro, which can mimic the native extracellular matrix, represent an important step towards a more realistic in vivo-like tumour microenvironment.

In my project, we are working on the development of a novel scaffold-based 3D cell culture model using different types of polymers such as polycaprolactone (PCL) and polylactide (PLA). A modified electrospinning method is utilized to fabricate highly porous 3D nanofiber scaffolds, mimicking the collagen fibres of the extracellular matrix. We also investigate proliferation, morphology and infilteration of the cells, primarily various breast cancer cells and other normal stromal cells such as fibroblasts, immune cells and co-culture of such cells in randomly-oriented 3D scaffolds. The effect of different new anti-cancer compounds on the cancer cells and cancer stem cells proliferation and survival was investigated as well. Our main objective was to recreate the miniaturized human tumour outside the body for pre-clinical cancer research and therapeutic screening.  

Beside using 3D systems as excellent alternative in vivo models, we are replacing animal ethically questionable fetal bovine serum (FBS)-supplemented medium with donor horse serum (DHS) medium in this project. We plan to continue the development of our 3D human tumour outside the body using the defined medium to obtain a totally animal free model system for pre-clinical cancer research. Our 3D system can also be used for evaluating effects on normal cells cultured in defined medium that thrive in the 3D PCL-based environment. Our goal is to contribute in replacing, refining and reducing the use of animal models in cancer research in future.

Expertis relaterad till FN:s globala mål

2015 godkände FN:s medlemsstater 17 Globala mål för en hållbar utveckling, för att utrota fattigdomen, skydda planeten och garantera välstånd för alla. Den här personens arbete relaterar till följande Globala mål:

  • SDG 3 – God hälsa och välbefinnande


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