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Differential gene expression and clonal selection during cellular transformation induced by adhesion deprivation

Rajeswari Jinka1, Renu Kapoor2, Sivapriya Pavuluri3, Avinash T Raj2, Mahesh J Kumar2, Lakshmi Rao2 and Gopal Pande2*

Author affiliations

1 Acharya Nagarjuna University, Department of Biochemistry, Guntur - 522510, India

2 Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Uppal Road, Hyderabad - 500 007, India

3 Vimta Labs Limited, Life Sciences Campus, #5, Alexandria Knowledge Park, Genome Valley, Shameerpet, Hyderabad - 500 078, India

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Citation and License

BMC Cell Biology 2010, 11:93  doi:10.1186/1471-2121-11-93

Published: 2 December 2010



Anchorage independent growth is an important hallmark of oncogenic transformation. Previous studies have shown that when adhesion dependent fibroblasts were prevented from adhering to a substrate they underwent anoikis. In the present study we have demonstrated how anoikis resistant cells gain the transformation related properties with sequential selection of genes. We have proposed this process as a model system for selection of transformed cells from normal cells.


This report demonstrates that some fibroblasts can survive during late stages of anoikis, at which time they exhibit transformation-associated properties such as in vitro colony formation in soft agar and in vivo subcutaneous tumour formation in nude mice. Cytogenetic characterisation of these cells revealed that they contained a t (2; 2) derivative chromosome and they have a selective survival advantage in non adherent conditions. Gene expression profile indicated that these cells over expressed genes related to hypoxia, glycolysis and tumor suppression/metastasis which could be helpful in their retaining a transformed phenotype.


Our results reveal some new links between anoikis and cell transformation and they provide a reproducible model system which can potentially be useful to study multistage cancer and to identify new targets for drug development.