Development and Characterization of Pediatric Osteosarcoma Xenografts

William H. Meyer, Janet A. Houghton, Peter J. Houghton, Bruce L. Webber, Edwin C. Douglass, A. Thomas Look

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Of 33 surgical specimens of osteosarcoma obtained from 24 patients, eight were established as transplantable tumor lines in immune-deprived CBA/CaJ inbred mice. Each line retained the histological characteristics of the corresponding primary tumor and produced human lactate dehydrogenase isozymes. Volume doubling times, which ranged from a mean of 123 ± 5.6 to 393 ± 9.8 days, were stable for individual lines over multiple passages. Flow cytometric analysis indicated similar cellular DNA content values in the primary human tumors and established xenograft lines; the presence of two separate stem lines, as in the original tumors, was observed in the laboratory models. Comparison of two methods of immune deprivation indicated that thymectomy, whole-body irradiation, and bone marrow reconstitution was associated with a higher rate of successful engraftment than was thymectomy, 1-θ-D-arabinofur-anosylcytosine treatment, and whole-body irradiation. Bone marrow-reconstituted mice also showed less variability in tumor volume doubling time. We conclude that osteosarcoma can be heterotransplanted into bone marrow-reconstituted mice with a relatively high success rate and that the xenografts retain features characteristic of the tumors of origin. The availability of these models should prove useful in the development of new therapeutic regimens and in understanding the biology of osteosarcoma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2781-2785
Number of pages5
JournalCancer Research
Issue number9
StatePublished - May 1 1990
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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