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Blood. 1998 Feb 15;91(4):1407-17.

Temporal and spatial distribution of DNA topoisomerase II alters during proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis in HL-60 cells.

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  • 1Department of Hematology, Juntendo University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan.


We related cellular content of DNA topoisomerase (topo) IIalpha and IIbeta with the cell cycle position in proliferating, differentiated, and apoptotic HL-60 cells using two-dimensional flow cytometry. In logarithmically growing HL-60 cells, topo IIalpha increased especially in late S to G2/M phases, although the topo IIbeta level was almost constant throughout the cell cycle. Induction of differentiation by all-trans retinoic acid dramatically reduced the topo IIalpha but not the topo IIbeta level. A new G2/M population containing virtually no topo IIalpha appeared during differentiation and was supposed to be alive and noncycling. Two-dimensional flow cytometry of topo IIalpha or IIbeta staining and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP-biotin nick end-labeling assay showed that one topo IIbeta epitope situated at the C-terminal end decreased specifically in apoptotic HL-60 cells treated with Ara-C, etoposide, and vincristine. The amounts of a topo IIalpha epitope and another topo IIbeta epitope located at a more central portion were almost equal between apoptotic and nonapoptotic cells. Western blot analysis confirmed that topo IIbeta protein was completely degraded into smaller fragments and lost its C-terminal end during apoptosis. On the contrary, a large portion of topo IIalpha remained of its original size, although both topo IIalpha and IIbeta left from the nuclear fraction in apoptotic cells. Confocal laser microscopy showed nuclear localization of topo IIalpha and IIbeta in growing HL-60 cells. Although topo IIalpha and IIbeta were distributed throughout the cell during mitosis, only topo IIalpha was densely concentrated in the mitotic chromosomes. Both enzymes were dissociated from the genomic DNA even at an early phase of apoptosis and completely separated from the propidium iodide signal of DNA in the advanced stage. Chromatin condensation process in apoptosis is therefore completely topo II-independent and obviously differs from the mitotic one.

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