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Cancer Genet Cytogenet. 2005 Oct 1;162(1):1-9.

Chromosome abnormalities in 10 lung cancer cell lines of the NCI-H series analyzed with spectral karyotyping.

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  • 1Cancer Genomics Program, Hutchison-MRC Research Centre, Departments of Pathology and Oncology, University of Cambridge, Hills Road, Cambridge CB2 2XZ, UK.


The karyotypes of 10 lung cancer cell lines of the NCI-H series were analyzed with spectral karyotyping (SKY): 7 non-small lung cancer (NSCLC) lines and 3 small cell lung cancer (SCLC) lines. Modal chromosome number ranged from 42 (NCI-H2171) to 72 (NCI-H2126). All lines showed at least six structural abnormalities, and most had amplifications visible as double minutes or homogeneously staining regions (HSRs). Four reciprocal translocations were found: t(1;17)(p10;p10) in NCI-H82, t(3;6)(q24;q21) and t(12;17)(p10;p10) in NCI-H2009, and a complex t(2;6) in NCI-H1437. NCI-H1770 had a striking HSR containing many copies of the NMYC region. Karyotypes showed a wide range of relationship between numerical and structural change. Two of the lines showed little numerical change but many structural rearrangements (NCI-H209 with mode 46, but 12 rearrangements, and NCI-H2009 with mode 48 but 27 rearrangements). A second group had karyotypes that appeared to have evolved by unbalanced translocation leading to proportionate loss of chromosomes, with or without endoreduplication. In other lines, notably NCI-H2122, the structurally abnormal chromosomes appeared to have been added to a near-diploid karyotype. The karyotypes contribute to a full genomic characterization of these lines, almost all of which have matching normal lymphoblastoid cell lines.

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