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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Shape-dependent regulation of proliferation in normal and malignant human cells and its alteration by interferon.

The relationship between cell morphology, proliferation, and contact inhibition was studied in normal and malignant human cells which varied in their sensitivity to contact inhibition. Their ability to proliferate was examined under conditions where the cells were constrained into different shapes by plating onto plastic surfaces coated with poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate). Poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate) can precisely vary the shape of cells without toxicity. Cell proliferation was quantitated by cell counts and labeling indices were determined by autoradiography. The normal JHU-1 foreskin fibroblasts and IMR-90 lung fibroblasts exhibited contact-inhibited growth with a saturation density of 2.9 X 10(5) and 2.0 X 10(5) cells/cm2, respectively. These cells also exhibited stringent dependency on cell shape with a mitotic index of less than 3% at poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate) concentrations at which the cells were rounded versus a labeling index of 75-90% when the cells were flat. The malignant bladder carcinoma line RT-4 exhibited partial contact-inhibited growth. Its dependency on cell shape was less stringent than that of normal cells with a mitotic index of 37-40% when rounded and 79% when flat. The malignant fibrosarcoma line, HT1080, was not contact inhibited and was entirely shape independent with a mitotic index of 70-90% regardless of cell shape. Treatment of HT1080 cells with low concentration of human fibroblast interferon (less than 40 units/ml) restored shape-dependent proliferation while having little effect on normal cells. Subantiproliferative doses of interferon were also shown to restore contact-inhibited proliferation control to malignant cells previously lacking it. The concordant restoration of contact inhibition and shape-dependent proliferation in malignant cells by interferon suggest that these two types of proliferation controls represent a manifestation of common regulatory mechanisms. However, since these effects occurred at interferon concentrations below that required to produce an antiproliferative effect, these actions of interferon may be distinct from the antiproliferative action.[1]


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