Abstract OBJECTIVES: Pancreatic cancer still remains a challenge for its biological complexity and lack of effective therapeutic strategies. Establishing new pancreatic cancer cell lines is therefore of paramount importance to clarify its biology. METHODS: We established and characterized 4 new pancreatic cancer cell lines (PP78, PP109, PP117, and PP161) according to their genetic (K-Ras, TP53, CDKN2A, and MADH4; DNA fingerprinting; karyotype), cytostructural (cytokeratins 7, 8, 18, and 19 vimentin, and ezrin), and functional profiles (doubling time; migration assay). RESULTS: K-Ras, TP53, and CDKN2A gene alterations were detected in all 4 of them. Each cell line had a unique DNA profile revealed by DNA fingerprinting. A complex karyotype with numerous structural and numeric chromosomal abnormalities was present in each cell line. All 4 cell lines showed positivity for cytokeratins 7, 8, and 18. All but PP78 expressed cytokeratin 19, whereas vimentin was expressed only in PP117 and PP78 cells. A different ezrin cellular distribution was noticed in PP78 and PP117, being mostly located at membrane ruffles. This peculiar distribution was associated with the strongest migratory capability. CONCLUSIONS: Our results seem to confirm the pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma heterogeneity; in fact, the same genetic abnormalities (K-Ras, TP53, and CDKN2A) may have different effects on tumor biology depending on cellular differentiation.
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