A human cholangiocellular carcinoma cell line, HuCC-T1, was established in vitro from the malignant cells of ascites of a 56-yr-old patient. Histologic findings of the primary liver tumor revealed a moderately differentiated adenocarcinoma. Tumor cells from the ascites have been cultured with RPMI 1640 medium containing 0.2% lactalbumin hydrolysate and the cultured cells grew as monolayers with a population doubling time of 74 h during exponential growth at Passage 25. They had an epithelial-like morphology and were positive for mucine staining. Ultrastructural studies revealed the presence of microvilli on the cell surface and poorly developed organelles in the cytoplasm. The HuCC-T1 cell was tumorigenic in nude mice. The number of chromosomes in HuCC-T1 ranged from 61 to 80. These human cholangiocellular carcinoma cells in serum-free medium secreted several tumor markers, including carbohydrate antigen 19/9, carbohydrate antigen 125, carcinoembryonic antigen, and tissue polypeptide antigen. The carbohydrate antigen 19/9 secretion level of HuCC-T1 cells cultured in RPMI 1640 medium with 1% fetal bovine serum was sixfold higher than that with 0.2% lactalbumin hydrolysate. These findings suggest that HuCC-T1 will provide useful information to clarify the mechanism of tumor marker secretion and tumor cell growth in the human cholangiocellular carcinoma.