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Cancer Lett. 1992 Feb 29;62(2):95-105.

Sensitivity of nuclear c-myc levels and induction to differentiation-inducing agents in human colon tumor cell lines.

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Department of Pharmacology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX 77030.


Six human colon tumor cell lines were analyzed for their constitutive levels of the c-myc protein. The nuclear proto-oncogene, c-myc, was detected as an expressed product in all of the human colon tumor cell lines analyzed. The poorly differentiated cell lines HCT116, RKO and C showed c-myc levels that averaged 2-fold greater than their well-differentiated counterparts, i.e., GEO, CBS and FET. When c-myc levels and responses to serum induction were analyzed in the presence of inducers of differentiation, i.e., dimethylformamide, retinoic acid, sodium butyrate and TGF-beta, distinct patterns of sensitivity and resistance emerged. Nuclear c-myc levels were reduced in all the colon cell phenotypes treated with dimethylformamide or sodium butyrate. Only the well-differentiated human colon tumor cell lines were responsive to transforming growth factor-beta. Only one of the human colon tumor cell lines (GEO) responded to retinoic acid. Increased levels of c-myc protein were found to correlate well with greater growth rates and with poor differentiation class. Similarly, a parallel sensitivity to down-regulation of c-myc levels and attenuation of c-myc induction curves for inducers of differentiation were observed in growth sensitive human colon tumor cell lines.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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