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J Histochem Cytochem. 1977 Jul;25(7):875-80.

Recognition of cells in mitosis by flow cytofluormetry.


Cells in mitosis may be distinguished from interphase cells based on difference in chromatin structure as revealed by two different methods of staining with acridine orange. In the first method, cells are heated and then stained at neutral pH; the difference in stainability between mitotic and interphase cells reflects the difference in the extent of deoxyribonucleic acid denatured by heat in these cells. At a given temperature the deoxyribonucleic acid of the mitotic cell appears to be more extensively denatured than that of the interphase cell. In the second method, cells are treated with buffer at pH 1.5 (1.3 to 1.9) and then stained at pH 2.6 (2.3 to 2.9). The mechanisms involved in the differential stainability of interphase versus mitotic cells at that low pH are currently under investigation. In both methods, in addition to enumerating cells in mitosis, it is possible to quantitate cells in G1, S and G2 phases of the cell cycle.

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