Percutaneous ultrasound guided implantation of VX2 for creation of a rabbit hepatic tumor model

Sarah B. White, Jeane Chen, Andrew C. Gordon, Kathleen R. Harris, Jodi R. Nicolai, Derek L. West, Andrew C. Larson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Creation of a VX2 tumor model has traditionally required a laparotomy and surgical implantation of tumor fragments. Open surgical procedures are invasive and require long procedure times and recovery that can result in post-operative morbidity and mortality. The purpose of this study is to report the results of a percutaneous ultrasound guided method for creation of a VX2 model in rabbit livers. A total of 27 New Zealand white rabbits underwent a percutaneous ultrasound guided approach, where a VX2 tumor fragment was implanted in the liver. Magnetic resonance imaging was used to assess for tumor growth and necropsy was performed to determine rates of tract seeding and metastatic disease. Ultrasound guided tumor implantation was successful in all 27 rabbits. One rabbit died 2 days following the implantation procedure. Two rabbits had no tumors seen on follow-up imaging. Therefore, tumor development was seen in 24/26 (92%) rabbits. During the follow-up period, tract seeding was seen in 8% of rabbits and 38% had extra-hepatic metastatic disease. Therefore, percutaneous ultrasound guided tumor implantation safely provides reliable tumor growth for establishing hepatic VX2 tumors in a rabbit model with decreased rates of tract seeding, compared to previously reported methods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere0123888
JournalPloS one
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 8 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • General


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