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Archived Comments for: Comparative analysis and integrative classification of NCI60 cell lines and primary tumors using gene expression profiling data

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  1. Identity of PC3 and DU145 prostate cancer cell lines

    Wolfgang Schulz, Heinrich Heine University, Dept. of Urology

    18 June 2007

    The authors report that the gene expression profiles of the commonly used cell lines PC3 and Du145 do not accord with those of primary prostate cancers and argue, very plausibly, that this difference may be due to the fact that both cell lines are from metastases and - unlike the majority of prostate cancers - lack the androgen receptor. We have recently reported (Neuhausen et al. Cancer Biol. Ther. 8:993ff, 2006) that PC3 contains 3/4 gene hypermethylation events that we think are characteristic of prostate cancer, whereas Du145 contains only one, viz. RASSF1A hypermethylation, which is the least specific. These results bolster the origin of PC3 as a prostate cancer cell line, but support the conclusion that caution should be exerted when considering Du145 as a model of prostate cancer. It is doubtless unfortunate for the development of prostate cancer therapies that the NCI panel contains these 'atypical' cell lines, whose main value lies in the fact that they can be handled conveniently. One should remark, however, that unfortunately few alternatives were available at the time when the panel was established.

    Competing interests