The main outcome of our research is to explore the applications of the CAM (chicken chorioallantoic membrane) assay in veterinary oncology. This unique in vivo model has multiple advantages of in vitro models, such as high throughput and low costs, which is not the case in most in vivo models. It harbors blood vessels, an extracellular environment and functions as an organ, which cannot be found in most in vitro models. Mainly due to the natural immunodeficiency and the easy access of a complex vascular network within the CAM, its applicability in oncology is of great interest. Not only in veterinary research, but as well in the biomedical field.
The applications of CAM within veterinary oncology will be investigated by the use of (animal) patient derived xenografts and testing new chemotherapeutics. Apart from the development of the primary tumors in the CAM, the angiogenesis and metastasis of the tumors will be of interest.
Shari Aerts started a Bachelor in Biology at Hasselt University in 2015. Afterwards, she obtained a master in Biomedical Sciences with the major ‘Molecular Mechanisms of Diseases’ at the University of Antwerp. Her Master’s dissertation was titled: ‘Influence of covariates on paediatric drug metabolism using a piglet model’ and was conducted at the CoPeD (comparative perinatal development) group at the faculty of Pharmaceutical, Biomedical and Veterinary Sciences at the University of Antwerp. After working as a PhD student at Ghent University in the Centre of Medical Genetics for one year, she joined the Laboratory of Veterinary Morphology at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine as a PhD student and Assisting Academic Staff member in November 2022, to work on the CAM model under supervision of Prof. Ward De Spiegelaere and Prof. Hilde de Rooster.