Background Information

B16 melanoma is a spontaneous melanoma derived from C57BL/6 mice. As a model for human tumors, it is important to note similarities and differences between B16 and human melanomas (see Table 20.1.2). Several variants were isolated by Dr. Isaiah J. Fidler in the mid-1970s, the main differences between sublines being their metastatic potential and susceptibility to immune destruction (Fidler et al., 1976; Fidler and Bucana, 1977). The most commonly used variant is B16.F10, which is highly aggressive and will metastasize from a primary subcutaneous site to the lungs, as well as colonize lungs upon intravenous (i.v.) injection. The parental line is named B16.F1; other variants are B16.F0, a poorly metastatic variant, and B16.BL6, which has a high degree of metastasis and intermediate colonization of lungs (Hart, 1979). Most laboratories use B16.F10 for in vivo experiments.

B16 melanoma is one of the very few pig-mented melanoma lines available for use in mice, although recently transgenic models have been developed in which the reliable incidence of melanoma allows the establishment of new lines (Chin et al., 1997; Otsuka et al., 1998; Zhu et al., 1998). In addition, a recent report de-

B16 as a Mouse Model for Human Melanoma

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