Recent progress in three-dimensional (3D) cell culture systems has attracted much attention in the fields of basic life science and drug development. Newly established methods include 3D co-culture, spheroid culture, and organoid culture; these methods enable more human tissue-like culture and have largely replaced traditional two-dimensional (2D) monolayer culture. By combining 3D culture methods with high-content imaging analysis, it is possible to obtain diverse and convincing data even during initial screening (which requires rapid and easy operating procedures). Until recently, 3D culture methods were considered expensive, time-consuming, complex, and unstable. However, by exploiting the self-assembling nature of cells and adding several technical improvements, we have developed several phenotypic screenings aimed at discovering anticancer compounds.
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