Background: Pancreatic cancer is still associated with devastating prognosis. Real progress in treatment options has still not been achieved. Therefore new models are urgently needed to investigate this deadly disease. As a part of this process we have established and characterized a new human pancreatic cancer cell line.
Methods: The newly established pancreatic cancer cell line PaCa 5061 was characterized for its morphology, growth rate, chromosomal analysis and mutational analysis of the K-ras, EGFR and p53 genes. Gene-amplification and RNA expression profiles were obtained using an Affymetrix microarray, and overexpression was validated by IHC analysis. Tumorigenicity and spontaneous metastasis formation of PaCa 5061 cells were analyzed in pfp-/-/rag2-/- mice. Sensitivity towards chemotherapy was analysed by MTT assay.
Results: PaCa 5061 cells grew as an adhering monolayer with a doubling time ranging from 30 to 48 hours. M-FISH analyses showed a hypertriploid complex karyotype with multiple numerical and unbalanced structural aberrations. Numerous genes were overexpressed, some of which have previously been implicated in pancreatic adenocarcinoma (GATA6, IGFBP3, IGFBP6), while others were detected for the first time (MEMO1, RIOK3). Specifically highly overexpressed genes (fold change > 10) were identified as EGFR, MUC4, CEACAM1, CEACAM5 and CEACAM6. Subcutaneous transplantation of PaCa 5061 into pfp-/-/rag2-/- mice resulted in formation of primary tumors and spontaneous lung metastasis.
Conclusion: The established PaCa 5061 cell line and its injection into pfp-/-/rag2-/- mice can be used as a new model for studying various aspects of the biology of human pancreatic cancer and potential treatment approaches for the disease.