In vitro maintenance of human prolactin secreting adenoma cells on an extracellular matrix (ECM) produced by bovine corneal endothelial cells is associated with the adoption of morphological properties that are not expressed when the cells are seeded on plastic. Cells seeded on ECM were firmly attached and highly flattened, whereas cells seeded on plastic formed aggregates which were loosely attached or floated in the medium. Moreover, prolactin production from cells on ECM is frequently stable for several weeks. Both tumor cells and normal cells are more likely to resemble their in vivo counterparts when maintained on extracellular matrix than on plastic, and therefore, cells cultured on ECM may provide a better system for oncogenic and endocrine studies.
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