[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed type of cancer in men, and there is no available cure for patients with advanced disease. In vitro model systems are urgently required to permit the study of human prostate cell differentiation and malignant transformation. Unfortunately, human prostate cells are particularly difficult to convert into continuously growing cultures. We report here the successful immortalization without viral oncogenes of prostate epithelial cells and, for the first time, prostate stromal cells. These cells exhibit a significant pattern of authentic prostate-specific features. In particular, the epithelial cell culture is able to differentiate into glandular buds that closely resemble the structures formed by primary prostate epithelial cells. The stromal cells have typical characteristics of prostate smooth muscle cells. These immortalized cultures may serve as a unique experimental platform to permit several research directions, including the study of cell-cell interactions in an authentic prostate microenvironment, prostate cell differentiation, and most significantly, the complex multistep process leading to prostate cell transformation.
Cancer Research 05/2006; 66(7):3531-40. · 8.65 Impact Factor