ESTABLISHMENT AND CHARACTERIZATION OF PRIMARY HUMAN PANCREATIC CARCINOMA IN CONTINUOUS CELL CULTURE AND IN NUDE MICE

Abstract

Summary.-Primary human pancreatic exocrine adenocarcinoma has been established in tissue culture and as xenografts in immune-deficient nu/nu mice. The cell line has a doubling time of 36 h and grows as a confluent monolayer together with a constant population of free-floating cells. Evidence of tumourigenicity was provided by growth on an early diploid fibroblast monolayer and in soft agar, and as solid tumours in immune-deficient nu/nu mice. Chromosome analysis of the cultured cells confirmed their tumour origin. Xenografts established from the cell line or directly from primary tumour tissue have retained a similar histology to the original tumour on serial transplantation. An electrophoretic study of exportable pancreatic digestive enzymes and a number of intracellular enzymes has shown that the cell line and xenografts maintain a human intracellular enzyme profile, but do not produce pancreatic digestive enzymes. AL)ENOCARCINOMA of the exocrine pancreas is increasing in incidence in the United States and Western Europe (Morgan & Wormsley, 1977). It is difficult to diagnose in a stage at which conventional therapy is likely to be effective, and is almost inevitably fatal. Laboratory studies of this tumour have been limited, by the lack of experimental models, to analysis of surgically excised tissue (Grant et al., 1978), pancreatic and duodenal juice (Allan & White, 1977) or other body fluids from cancer-bearing patients (Chu et al., 1977; Gelder et al., 1978). There is a need for detailed in vitro studies, but the difficulty of establishing the tumour in primary culture or as xenografts in immunedeficient animals is reflected by the limited number of successful reports in this fiel

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