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Prostate. 2005 May 15;63(3):291-8.

Culture of mouse prostatic epithelial cells from genetically engineered mice.

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Department of Cancer Biology, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA.



The lack of appropriate prostate cancer models is a major problem for prostate cancer research. Progress has been made towards the development of better in vivo rodent genetic models for prostatic disease. However, an in vitro model is often preferred for the elucidation of cellular mechanisms involved in the disease.


We microdissected the four prostatic lobes from young male mice, harvested the epithelial components, and grew epithelial cells from these tissues. We maintained the growth of these cells in long-term and three-dimensional culture.


We have reproducibly harvested and cultured for extended passages mouse prostatic epithelial cells (MPECs) from a variety of mouse genetic strains. These cells express luminal and basal epithelial markers as well as the androgen receptor. Additionally, MPECs form classic branching structures in a three-dimensional collagen matrix.


We have developed a novel culture system to harvest and grow MPECs in long-term culture. These cells will serve as a useful in vitro complement to studies using mouse genetic models for prostatic disease.

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