In vivo visualization of metastatic prostate cancer and quantitation of disease progression in immunocompromised mice

Cancer Biol Ther. Nov-Dec 2003;2(6):656-60.


While survival periods for patients with localized prostate cancer have increased, there is still no curative therapy for metastatic disease. Using non-invasive bioluminescent imaging, we designed a comprehensive murine model to monitor tumor location and expansion. We detected micrometastases after one week that correlated by gross necropsy, autoradiography, and histopathology with organ and skeletal lesions seen clinically. We calculated in vivo kinetics for tumor growth based on biophoton emissions and observed significantly faster growth of bone lesions and of overall tumor burden in young mice compared to old mice. This model provides a controllable biological system for further investigation into the pathogenesis of metastatic prostate cancer and evaluation of new therapies.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Division
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Transformation, Neoplastic
  • Cell Transformation, Viral
  • Cell Transplantation
  • Diagnostic Imaging*
  • Disease Progression
  • Humans
  • Kinetics
  • Luciferases / metabolism
  • Luminescent Measurements*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, SCID
  • Neoplasm Metastasis / diagnosis*
  • Osteoclasts / metabolism
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / pathology
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / physiopathology*
  • Retroviridae / genetics
  • Spine / pathology
  • Spine / physiopathology


  • Luciferases