Response to doxorubicin of cultured normal and cancerous human mammary epithelial cells

H. S. Smith, M. E. Lippman, A. J. Hiller, M. R. Stampfer, A. J. Hackett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Epithelial cells were isolated and cultured from a number of human mammary specimens of both cancerous and noncancerous origin. Doxorubicin (Dx) sensitivity was measured at second passage with the use of a highly efficient clonogenic assay. For 23 different tumor specimens derived from patients without previous chemotherapy, the drug concentrations required to kill 50% of the cells varied approximately 35-fold. In contrast, for 11 tumor specimens from patients who relapsed after regimens contanining Dx, the drug concentration for 50% survival varied only fivefold and the dose-response curves for these specimens clustered at the more resistant end of the spectrum. A wide range of sensitivities was also observed among 13 noncancerous mammary specimens; however, tumor tissue and noncancerous tissue from the same donor were similar. When cultures were subjected to drug incubation periods of 1 and 4 hours, dose-response curves were superimposable when plotted as a function of drug concentration multiplied by time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)341-347
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the National Cancer Institute
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jul 4 1985

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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