The cell line NIH-H460, derived from a human large-cell carcinoma of the lung, because metastatic in the lung of athymic mice after S.C. injection. Using serial S.C. passages of the lung metastasis, a cell line was selected, H460M, which was characterized by an increased metastatic potential compared to the parental cells after s.c. (Spontaneous metastases) or i.v. injection (experimental metastases). For the high frequency of lung metastases in the mouse and the short time required to develop metastatic foci, the H460M cells transplanted in nude mice represent a unique preclinical model for biological and therapeutic studies. The paper describes the growth and some biological properties (invasion and migration capability, membrane profile) of this experimental in vivo model.