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Establishment and Characterization of a Normal Melanocyte Cell Line Derived from Pig Skin

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Several minipig strains develop spontaneous malignant melanoma. As a first step toward the analysis of genes involved in the tumoral progression of melanoma in these animal models, we developed culture conditions for pig melanocytes whereby melanocytes from normal epidermis can be isolated directly onto mitotically inactivated keratinocytes in Eagle's minimal essential medium supplemented with fetal calf serum, tetradecanoyl phorbol acetate (TPA) and cholera toxin. We also derived an immortal line of pigmented melanocytes from the epidermis of a healthy Meishan pig. This cell line, designated PigMel, retains differentiation function in culture, dependence on TPA and cholera toxin and a diploid chromosome number. PigMel melanocytes exhibit morphological and molecular characteristics common to normal mammalian skin melanocytes.
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Keywords: Activating protein 2; Cell line; Melanocyte; Pig; Primary culture; Skin; Swine

Document Type: Short Communication

Publication date: 01 August 2003

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