8 research outputs found

    Selective Targeting of Tumorigenic Cancer Cell Lines by Microtubule Inhibitors

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    For anticancer drug therapy, it is critical to kill those cells with highest tumorigenic potential, even when they comprise a relatively small fraction of the overall tumor cell population. We have used the established NCI/DTP 60 cell line growth inhibition assay as a platform for exploring the relationship between chemical structure and growth inhibition in both tumorigenic and non-tumorigenic cancer cell lines. Using experimental measurements of “take rate” in ectopic implants as a proxy for tumorigenic potential, we identified eight chemical agents that appear to strongly and selectively inhibit the growth of the most tumorigenic cell lines. Biochemical assay data and structure-activity relationships indicate that these compounds act by inhibiting tubulin polymerization. Yet, their activity against tumorigenic cell lines is more selective than that of the other microtubule inhibitors in clinical use. Biochemical differences in the tubulin subunits that make up microtubules, or differences in the function of microtubules in mitotic spindle assembly or cell division may be associated with the selectivity of these compounds

    Systematic variation in gene expression patterns in human cancer cell lines

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    We used cDNA microarrays to explore the variation in expression of approximately 8,000 unique genes among the 60 cell lines used in the National Cancer Institute's screen for anti-cancer drugs. Classification of the cell lines based solely on the observed patterns of gene expression revealed a correspondence to the ostensible origins of the tumours from which the cell lines were derived. The consistent relationship between the gene expression patterns and the tissue of origin allowed us to recognize outliers whose previous classification appeared incorrect. Specific features of the gene expression patterns appeared to be related to physiological properties of the cell lines, such as their doubling time in culture, drug metabolism or the interferon response. Comparison of gene expression patterns in the cell lines to those observed in normal breast tissue or in breast tumour specimens revealed features of the expression patterns in the tumours that had recognizable counterparts in specific cell lines, reflecting the tumour, stromal and inflammatory components of the tumour tissue. These results provided a novel molecular characterization of this important group of human cell lines and their relationships to tumours in vivo