Springer Nature is making SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 research free. View research | View latest news | Sign up for updates

Initiation and ultrastructure of a reptilian fibroblast cell line obtained from cutaneous fibropapillomas of the green turtle,Chelonia mydas

  • 56 Accesses

  • 9 Citations


Two fibroblastic cell lines were established from explants of fibropapillomas of each of two different green turtles (Chelonia mydas). These cells, designated GTFP (Green Turtle Fibropapilloma), were subcultured approximately 30 times at 30°C in Eagle’s minimal essential media supplemented with 2 to 10% fetal bovine serum. The ultrastructural morphology of the cultured fibroblasts is described. The cells contained abundant rough endoplasmic reticulum, polyribosomes, and mitochondria; collagen fibrils were visible in the extracellular space. No viruslike particles or evidence of other pathogenic agents could be demonstrated by electron microscopy in any of the cultured cells examined.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.


  1. 1.

    Bayne, E. K.; Simpson, S. B., Jr. Detection of myosin in perfusion G0 lizard myoblastsin vitro. Dev. Biol. 55:306–319; 1977.

  2. 2.

    Clark, H. F.; Karzon, D. T. Terrapene heart (TH-1), a continuous cell line from the heart of the box turtleTerrapene carolina. Exp. Cell. Res. 48:263–268; 1967.

  3. 3.

    Clark, H. F.; Cohen, M. M.; Karzon, D. T. Characterization of reptilian cell lines established at incubation temperatures of 23° C to 36°C. Proc. Soc. Exp. Biol. Med. 133:1039–1047; 1970.

  4. 4.

    Freeman, A. E.; Igel, H. J.; Herrman, B. J., et al. Growth and characterization of human skin epithelial cell cultures. In Vitro 12(5):352–362; 1976.

  5. 5.

    Jacobson, E. R.; Mansell, J. L.; Sundberg, J. P., et al. Light and electron microscopic evaluations of green turle fibropapillomas. J. Comp. Pathol. 101:39–52; 1989.

  6. 6.

    Koment, R. W.; Haines, H. Characterization of a reptilian epitheloid skin cell line derived from the green sea turtle,Chelonia mydas. In Vitro 18(3):227–232; 1982.

  7. 7.

    Lucke, B. Studies on tumors in cold-blooded vertebrates. Annual Report of the Tortugas Laboratory, Washington, DC: Carnegie Institute of Washington; 38:92–94; 1938.

  8. 8.

    Michalski, F.; Cohen, M. M.; Clark, H. F. Adult and embryonic gecko cellsin vitro: growth characteristics, infection by rabies, Sindbis and polyoma viruses, and transformation by SV40. Proc. Soc. Exp. Biol. Med. 146:337–348; 1974.

  9. 9.

    Orr, H. C.; Hams, L. E.; Bader, A. V., et al. Cultivation of cells from a fibroma in a rattlesnake,Crotalus horridus. JNCI 48:259–264; 1972.

  10. 10.

    Orr, H. C.; Probst, P. G.; Rogers, J. L., et al. Derivation and biological properties of cell lines from ophidian tissues. JNCI 51:827–832; 1973.

  11. 11.

    Price, F. M.; Camalier, R. F.; Gantt, R., et al. A new culture medium for human skin epithelial cells. In Vitro 16(2):147–158; 1980.

  12. 12.

    Reid, L.; Morrow, B.; Jubsinsky, P., et al. Regulation of growth and differentiation of epithelial cells by hormones, growth factors, and substrates of extracellular matrix. Ann. NY Acad. Sci. 372:354–370; 1981.

  13. 13.

    Simpson, S. B., Jr. Vertebrate regeneration system: culturein vitro. Science 15:1330–1332; 1967.

  14. 14.

    Simpson, S. B., Jr.; Cox, P. G. Studies on lizard myogenesis. In: Banker, B. O.; Przybylski, R. J.; Van Der Muelen, J. B., et al., eds.Research in Muscle Development and the Muscle Spindle. Amsterdam: Excerpta Medica; 1972:72–87.

  15. 15.

    Smith, G. M.; Coates, C. W. Fibro-epithelial growths of the skin in large marine turtles,Chelonia mydas (Linnaeus). Zoologica 23:93–98; 1938.

  16. 16.

    Stephenson, N. G. Effects of temperature on reptilian and other cells. J. Embryol. Exp. Morphol. 16:455–467; 1966.

  17. 17.

    Wolf, K.; Quimby, M. C. Amphibian cell culture: permanent cell line from the bull frog (Rana catesbecana). Science 144:1578–1580; 1964.

  18. 18.

    Zeigel, R. F.; Clark, H. F. Histologic and electron microscopic observations on a tumor-bearing viper: establishment of a “C”-type virus producing cell line. JNCI 46:309–321; 1971.

Download references

Author information

Correspondence to Elliott R. Jacobson.

Additional information

Supported in part by a grant from Sea World Research Institute, Hubbs Marine Research Center, San Diego, California 92109, and the Chelonia Institute, Arlington, Virginia 22209. Published as University of Florida, College of Veterinary Medicine, Journal Series no. 192.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Mansell, J.L., Jacobson, E.R. & Gaskin, J.M. Initiation and ultrastructure of a reptilian fibroblast cell line obtained from cutaneous fibropapillomas of the green turtle,Chelonia mydas . In Vitro Cell Dev Biol 25, 1062–1064 (1989). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02624142

Download citation

Key words

  • fibropapilloma
  • cell line
  • ultrastructure
  • green turtle
  • Chelonia mydas