PubMed | The Manzanar Project Foundation
Type: Journal Article | Journal: In vitro cellular & developmental biology. Animal | Year: 2010
Lack of tissue-specific differentiated functions of cells in tissue culture, once thought to be due to dedifferentiation, was shown to be due to selective overgrowth of fibroblasts by a series of simple experiments that challenged the prevailing dogma. Following this insight, enrichment culture techniques (alternate animal and culture passage) were designed to give functionally differentiated tumor cells selective advantage over the fibroblasts. These experiments resulted in the derivation of a large number of functionally differentiated clonal strains of a range of cell types, providing the final point of destruction of the dogma of dedifferentiation. Instead, the hypothesis was proposed that cells in culture accurately represent cells in vivo, but without the complex in vivo environment. With the development of hormonally defined media and its combination with functionally differentiated clonal cell lines, this concept has been strengthened and the potential of tissue culture studies has been greatly augmented. Hormonally defined media allow the culture of cell types that cannot be grown in conventional, serum-supplemented media. These approaches demonstrate that hormonal responses and dependencies can be discovered in culture. Following this thinking and the discovery of hormonal dependencies of cancer cells has led to a new rationale for therapy. Tissue culture and cell technology continue to play an important role in solving human health problems.