1988 In Vitro Cell Dev Biol 1988 Jul ;24 (7):625-32
Centre International de Recherches Dermatologiques (CIRD), Valbonne, France.

Differentiation of normal and tumoral human keratinocytes cultured on dermis: reconstruction of either normal or tumoral architecture

Normal human keratinocytes isolated from skin and squamous carcinoma cells established from a human tumor (TR146 cell line) both exhibit limited morphologic differentiation when they are grown on conventional plastic dishes. However, when they are seeded on human de-epidermized dermis and cultured at the air-liquid interface, they are able to reform an epithelium having the morphology of the tissue of origin (i.e. skin or squamous carcinoma). The distribution in such reconstructed tissues of differentiation markers such as bullous pemphigoid antigen, 67K keratin, involucrin, membrane-bound transglutaminase, and filaggrin was very similar to their distribution in normal skin and squamous carcinoma specimens, respectively. The degree of differentiation is for both cell types extremely sensitive to culture conditions such as retinoic acid concentration, emersion of the cultures, etc. These results show that subcultured normal or tumoral keratinocytes are able to recover their specific morphogenetic potential when cultured in an environment close to their in vivo situation.