Primary Culture of Pancreatic Acinar Cells in a 3-D Collagen Matrix
Pancreatitis is a life threatening disease of the pancreas that leads to nearly a quarter million hospitalizations per year. The disease has many known causative factors, however, there is little information available explaining the cellular mechanisms involved in the development and course of the disease. Regardless of the specific cause of the disease, the initial events that trigger pancreatitis are signals that occur in the pancreatic acinar cell and lead to the premature activation of digestive zymogens. Currently there is no reliable long term primary culture technique for acinar cells. Attempts to culture acinar cells have shown that under standard culture conditions, primary cells degrade rapidly in terms of loss of viability, polarity, and secretory function. The cellular health of isolated and cultured acinar cell degraded within the first 24 hours of culture. The rapid decline in cellular health that was demonstrated suggests a flaw in the isolation method or in the culture.