Human pancreatic duct epithelial cell model for KRAS transformation

Methods Enzymol. 2008;439:1-13. doi: 10.1016/S0076-6879(07)00401-6.


Mutations on the KRAS gene occur early during pancreatic duct cell carcinogenesis and have been identified in up to 90% of ductal adenocarcinoma. However, the functional role of KRAS mutations in the malignant transformation of normal pancreatic duct epithelial cells into cancer cells remains unknown. We have developed an in vitro model for KRAS transformation using near-normal HPV-16E6E7-immortalized human pancreatic ductal epithelial (HPDE-E6E7) cells. The expression of mutant KRAS(G12V) in HPDE cells by retroviral transduction resulted in weak tumorigenic transformation, with tumors formed in 50% of immune-deficient scid mice implanted by these KRAS-transformed cells. The model provides an opportunity to dissect further the molecular and cellular mechanisms associated with human pancreatic duct cell carcinogenesis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cell Culture Techniques / methods
  • Cell Transformation, Neoplastic / genetics*
  • Epithelial Cells / physiology
  • Genes, ras / physiology
  • Humans
  • Pancreatic Ducts / cytology*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / genetics*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / physiology*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins p21(ras)
  • ras Proteins / genetics*
  • ras Proteins / physiology*


  • KRAS protein, human
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins p21(ras)
  • ras Proteins