Distinctive patterns of hyperplasia in transgenic mice with mouse mammary tumor virus transforming growth factor-alpha. Characterization of mammary gland and skin proliferations

Am J Pathol. 1992 May;140(5):1131-46.


Eight lines of transgenic mice expressing a mouse mammary tumor virus (MMTV) human transforming growth factor-alpha (TGF alpha) fusion gene were established. Three lines with distinctive phenotypes are presented. All have proliferative changes of the mammary gland. One line has sebaceous gland hyperplasia of the skin. Five histologic patterns of mammary gland hyperplasia based on two of these lines were identified: cystic hyperplasia, solid hyperplasia, dysplasia, adenoma, and adenocarcinoma. Human TGF alpha mRNA and protein were produced in all patterns but appeared reduced in solid hyperplasia, dysplasia, and adenocarcinoma. TGF alpha immunoreactivity in the mammary tissue, cystic fluid, and serum did not show significant differences; hyperplasia developed in 65% of multiparous mice and 45% of virgin mice by 12 months of age. Adenocarcinoma developed in 40% of multiparous mice and 30% of virgin mice by 16 months of age. These transgenic lines may provide useful models of mammary and sebaceous gland hyperplasia analogous to human disease.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cysts / metabolism
  • Cysts / pathology
  • Hyperplasia
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Mammary Glands, Animal / pathology*
  • Mammary Tumor Virus, Mouse / metabolism*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Nucleic Acid Hybridization
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Radioimmunoassay
  • Skin / pathology*
  • Transforming Growth Factor alpha / genetics
  • Transforming Growth Factor alpha / metabolism*


  • RNA, Messenger
  • Transforming Growth Factor alpha