Diphtheria toxin was titrated in primary cells, cell-lines and known tumour cell-cultures from nine animal species. The effects of toxin were assayed by the conventional cytotoxic test and by a dye-uptake method. Both tests placed the various cell-cultures in the same order of sensitivity to toxin, reflecting the sensitivity of the donor animals. The dye-uptake technique was found to be as reproducible as the cytotoxic test, and more precise, for calculating the sensitivity of cell cultures to diphtheria toxin.

Comparison of primary cells and cell-lines from the same animal species showed no constant pattern of sensitivity to toxin. For example, primary mouse cells were more sensitive than a mouse cell-line, and vice versa with rabbit cells. There was also variability in relative sensitivity of normal and tumour cells from the same species.


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