Generation and characterisation of novel pancreatic adenocarcinoma xenograft models and corresponding primary cell lines

PLoS One. 2014 Aug 22;9(8):e103873. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0103873. eCollection 2014.


Pancreatic adenocarcinoma is one of the most lethal cancer types, currently lacking efficient treatment. The heterogeneous nature of these tumours are poorly represented by the classical pancreatic cell lines, which have been through strong clonal selection in vitro, and are often derived from metastases. Here, we describe the establishment of novel pancreatic adenocarcinoma models, xenografts and corresponding in vitro cell lines, from primary pancreatic tumours. The morphology, differentiation grade and gene expression pattern of the xenografts resemble the original tumours well. The cell lines were analysed for colony forming capacity, tumourigenicity and expression of known cancer cell surface markers and cancer stem-like characteristics. These primary cell models will be valuable tools for biological and preclinical studies for this devastating disease.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma / genetics
  • Adenocarcinoma / metabolism
  • Adenocarcinoma / pathology*
  • Aged
  • Animals
  • Antigens, Surface / metabolism
  • Biomarkers / metabolism
  • Biopsy
  • Carcinoma, Pancreatic Ductal / genetics
  • Carcinoma, Pancreatic Ductal / metabolism
  • Carcinoma, Pancreatic Ductal / pathology
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Transformation, Neoplastic / genetics
  • Cluster Analysis
  • Disease Models, Animal*
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Heterografts
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Immunophenotyping
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Middle Aged
  • Mutation
  • Neoplasm Grading
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Neoplastic Stem Cells / metabolism
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / genetics
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Transcriptome
  • Tumor Stem Cell Assay


  • Antigens, Surface
  • Biomarkers

Grant support

This work was financially supported by the Cancer Stem Cell Innovation Centre (CAST-SFI) and HSØ (Grant nr. 2011090). The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.