Published in Cancer Detection and Prevention 1997; 21(2):148-157.

Consecutive Maintenance of Human Solitary and Hereditary Colorectal Polyps in Scid Mice

Kawaguchi, MDa,b, H. Nakajima, PhDa, T. Hongyo, MD PhDa, K. Fukuda, MDa, Eiji Taniguchi, MD,a,b K. Sutoh, BPharma, Hui Wang, MDa, P. Hande, PhDa, Li Ya Li, MDa, M. Kurooka, MDa, T. Iwasa, BSa, N. Kurokawa, PhDa,c, R. Nezu, MDb, M. Miyata, MD PhDb, H. Matsuda, MD PhDb and T. Nomura, MD PhDa

aDepartment of Radiation Biology, bFirst Department of Surgery, and cHospital Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Osaka University, Yamada-Oka, Suita, Osaka, Japan

Address all correspondence and reprint requests to: T. Nomura, M.D., Ph.D., Department of Radiation Biology, Faculty of Medicine, Osaka University, 2-2 Yamada-Oka, Suita, Osaka 565, Japan.

ABSTRACT: Recently, the sequential changes from adenoma to adenocarcinoma have been well studied in human colorectal carcinogenesis. To study the precise clonal changes from colorectal polyps to cancer, we have established an experimental system to maintain human colorectal polyps in severe combined immunodeficient (SCID) mice that have been improved by the selective inbreeding of C.B 1 7-scid/scid homozygous male and female showing undetectable serum IgG and IgM (<1 ug/ml). Two of two solitary polyps from two nonhereditary colon polyp patients, four of five colon polyps from two Peutz-Jeghers' syndrome patients and one polypoid lesion from a familial polyposis coli (FAP) patient grew very slowly but steadily, at approximately one-tenth the rate of their malignant form, (i.e., adenocarcinoma), in the improved SCID mice and were maintained for a long period (more than 2 years), over several mouse generations. However, two polyps from FAP and Peutz-Jeghers' syndrome patients could not be transplanted further because of microinfection at the transplanted site due to incomplete sterilization of original human tumors prior to surgical operation (endoscopic polypectomy). Transplanted colon polyps had a semitransparent, soft and sticky appearance, with cells containing large amounts of mucin, Malignant transformation of human colon polyp to adenocarcinoma has not been observed during the maintenance period (about 2 years) in SCID mice. In the consecutively maintained human colon polyps, however, K-ras mutations were detected at codon 12, while these mutations were not found in their original polyps in the patients.

KEY WORDS: human colorectal polyp, growth in SCID mice, adenoma-carcinoma sequence, K-ras mutation.