Vol 44, No 1 (2006)
Original paper
Published online: 2006-04-06

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Spontaneous apoptosis of melanotic and amelanotic melanoma cells in different phases of cell cycle: relation to tumor growth.

Mirosława Cichorek, Krystyna Kozłowska, Małgorzata Wachulska, Katarzyna Zielińska
Folia Histochem Cytobiol 2006;44(1):31-36.


Since the spontaneous alteration of native melanotic (Ma) into amelanotic (Ab) transplantable melanoma line it has been observed that this alteration is accompanied by the acceleration of growth of Ab line. The aim of the present study was to check and estimate spontaneous apoptosis of cells from cell cycle phases. Cytometric cell cycle analysis was performed by staining cells with propidium iodide (PI). Apoptosis estimated by the TUNEL method, alterations in the plasma membrane structure (annexin V staining), changes in the mitochondrial transmembrane potential--delta psi m (JC-1 staining) showed that amelanotic melanoma cells have decreased ability to undergo spontaneous apoptosis. The obtained results showing that in the native melanotic line about 30% of cells are in S+G2/M phases and that 33% of these cells undergo apoptosis could lead to the conclusion that the slower growth of this melanoma line is the result of lower proliferation activity and higher rate of apoptosis of these tumor cells. The number of cells in S+G2/M phases in amelanotic melanoma line increases up to 40% and only 7% of them undergo apoptosis. This observation seems to suggest that the expansive growth of this melanoma line depends mainly on the decreased ability to undergo spontaneous apoptosis, especially in case of cells from S+G2/M phases. Moreover, the obtained results indicate that alteration of melanotic line into amelanotic one, accompanied by differences in many biological features also concerns basic cell processes such as cell cycle and cell death.

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