We present a new human osteosarcoma cell line designated OHS-4. These cells showed a high alkaline phosphatase activity that is not regulated by 1,25 dihydroxyvitamin D3. They exhibited a sensitive adenylate cyclase response to parathyroid hormone but not to prostaglandin E2 or human calcitonin. By Northern blot analysis we could detect type I collagen mRNA but none for type III collagen. The cells were able to produce human osteocalcin at a maximum level of 35 ng per million cells when exposed to 2.4 nM 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 for 96 h. We purified this protein from conditioned media using successive chromatography and assessed its identity by partial amino acid sequencing. When injected into nude mice, the cells retained their osteogenic activity and developed calcified tumors. After Von Kossa staining, we observed nonmineralized osteoid deposits and mineralized deposits with a structure similar to that of trabecular bone by light microscopy. On the basis of its osteoblastic characteristics, this new osteosarcoma cell line may represent the human counterpart of the ROS 17/2 cell line. This cell line represents a valuable model for the isolation and characterization of human bone specific proteins.

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