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Wien Med Wochenschr. 1996;146(9-10):216-7.

[In vitro transformation of amniotic cells to muscle cells--background and outlook].

[Article in German]

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  • 1Institut für Anatomie, Universität Wien.


DNA analysis of peripheral blood leucocytes is routinely used to demonstrate mutations in the dystrophin gene in patients with Duchenne's muscular dystrophy. In approximately 35% of patients. DNA studies are not informative; in these patients immunochemical analysis of a muscle-biopsy specimen can determine whether dystrophin, the protein product of the gene for Duchenne's dystrophy, is absent. DNA analysis can be performed in amniocytes for the prenatal diagnosis; immunochemical testing for dystrophin cannot be performed because the protein is not expressed in these cells. To circumvent this limitation in prenatal diagnosis, we induced myogenesis in amniocyte cultures by addition of a rhabdomyosarcoma's cell line supernatant. Rhabdomyosarcomas are tumors of skeletal muscle and known to produce myogenic factors. After 6 weeks skeletal-muscle proteins could be detected in 10 amniocyte cultures. Cultures from fetuses with no family history of Duchenne's dystrophy expressed dystrophin, cultures from patients with Duchenne's dystrophy were dystrophin-deficient. Immunochemical analysis of dystrophin in genetically altered non-muscle cells may be applicable to the prenatal diagnosis of Duchenne's muscular dystrophy when conventional DNA analysis is not informative.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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