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Biochim Biophys Acta. 1990 Aug 6;1045(3):239-44.

Gangliosides in the human glioma cell line U-118 MG grown in culture or as xenografts in nude rats.

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Department of Psychiatry and Neurochemistry, Gothenburg University, St. Jörgen Hospital, Hisings Backa, Sweden.


This study was undertaken to characterize gangliosides in the human glioma cell line U-118 MG. The cell line was grown both in cell culture and as xenografts in nude rats. A common finding in both culture and xenograft cells was the high proportion of the lactoseries ganglioside 3'-LM1, approximately one third of the total ganglioside sialic acid. Otherwise, there were marked differences between the two cell sources. The cells grown in culture had a more simple ganglioside pattern than those grown in xenografts. In the latter instance, more complex gangliosides of the lactoseries, including 3'8'-LD1, sialyllactonorhexaosylceramide and a branched structure with two terminal NeuAc alpha 2-3Gal beta 1- 4GlcNAc chains, and the gangliotetraose series were found. Another marked difference involved GM2, which in the cultured cells was a major fraction, indicating that the synthesis of the gangliotetraose series gangliosides in the former stopped at the level of GM2. These results show that the ganglioside composition of a glioma cell line is strongly influenced by environmental factors.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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