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Mayo researchers develop new laboratory cell lines to study treatment for ATC
Date:8/24/2010

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. To their deep dismay, researchers at Mayo Clinic discovered several years ago that laboratory samples of anaplastic thyroid cancer (ATC) they were using to help them find new treatments for this lethal disease were probably some other kind of cancer.

It quickly became evident that the situation in their lab was common throughout the world. Up to half of the cell lines that were supposed to originate from patients with this rare thyroid cancer were either colon or melanoma cancer.

So, with the cooperation of many researchers nationwide, the Mayo researchers set out to create a new set of laboratory ATC cells, derived from tumors donated by patients.

In the Aug. 25 online issue of the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, the researchers report successful creation of four new ATC cell lines, each with a different set of molecular mutations driving this aggressive cancer. Survival for ATC patients is typically brief, three to four months on average, as illustrated by the speculated ATC diagnosis and death in 2005 of Chief Justice of the United States William Rehnquist.

The researchers are sharing the new ATC cells with researchers internationally who need them, says the study's co-principal author, John Copland, Ph.D., a cancer biologist at the Mayo Clinic campus at Jacksonville.

"Since cell lines are immortal and can live forever, they are critical to research and a major issue is cell line contamination leading to misidentification and drawing incorrect conclusions for specific cancers," Dr. Copland says. "We provide higher standards for characterizing new cell lines at the genomic and molecular level that can be traced back to the originating tumor ti
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Contact: Kevin Punsky
punsky.kevin@mayo.edu
904-953-2299
Mayo Clinic
Source:Eurekalert

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