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Genomics. 2002 Sep;80(3):361-71.

Transcriptome analysis of monocytic leukemia cell differentiation.

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  • 1Institut de Génétique Humaine, UPR CNRS 1142, Montpellier, France.


The human leukemia cell line U937 is a well-established model for studying monocytic cell differentiation. We used a modified protocol (SADE) of serial analysis of gene expression (SAGE) and developed a SADE linker-anchored PCR assay to investigate the pattern of expression of known genes and to identify new transcripts in proliferating cells and during cell growth arrest and differentiation. We implemented new informatic tools to compare expression profiles before and after exposure of cells to differentiation inducers. From the analysis of 47,388 tags, we identified 13,806 distinct transcripts, 265 of which showed significant variations (P<0.01). Among 1219 well-identified genes, major changes concerned transcription and translation components, cytoskeleton, and macrophage-specific genes. Nearly half of the tags, some of them expressed at high levels, matched partially characterized genes or ESTs, or revealed yet-unknown transcripts, providing a wealth of new candidate genes that may reveal novel aspects of terminal monocytic differentiation.

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