In this communication we shall endeavor to present a description of some of the methods that we have used in establishing strains of human normal and tumor cells, and an account of some of our results. We believe that the value of this report lies not in the presentation of new and unique methods for maintaining tissue cultures under continuous cultivation, but in presenting evidence that very different methods and media can be used to obtain approximately the same end-results. This holds true, however, only when the highly important factor of experience in the management of tissue cultures is used to best advantage.

The opinion of many workers that human tissue cultures are difficult to maintain is not justified. Just as much time and energy are involved in the maintenance of a rapidly growing rat sarcoma as in the maintenance of a similar human tumor. In this laboratory, by the large lying-drop slide method, we have maintained the Walker rat sarcoma 338 for a period of over four years and a half, and a human chondromyxosarcoma (Table IV) for approximately the same length of time. Strains of cells from these tumors are still under cultivation.

The advantage of knowing that many different types of human tumor cells can be maintained under continuous cultivation for long periods of time may not on first mention become apparent to many. When, however, one considers their use and their importance in collecting radiosensitivity data for specific cell types, and in the study of their cytological, cultural, and metabolic activities, the value of such knowledge is readily appreciated. The concept that pure cultures of human tumor cells can be used as sources of living antigen for immunological and therapeutic purposes must not be overlooked. We are inclined to consider this aim as of greater significance than any of the others.

1 Supported by a grant from The International Cancer Research Foundation.

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