Retinoic acid (RA) treatment of HL-60 cells in vitro induces granulocytic differentiation, involving reorganization of the nucleus and cytoplasm, development of chemoattractant-directed migration, and eventual apoptosis. The present studies with HL-60/S4 cells document that major elements of the cytoskeleton are changed: actin increases by 50%; vimentin decreases by more than 95%. The cellular content of alpha-tubulin does not significantly change; but the centrosomal-microtubule (MT) array moves away from the lobulating nucleus. Cytoskeletal-modifying chemicals modulate this polarized reorganization: Taxol and cytochalasin D enhance centrosome movement; nocodazole reverses it. Cytoskeletal-modifying chemicals do not appear to affect nuclear lobulation or the integrity of envelope-limited chromatin sheets (ELCS). Employing bcl-2-overexpressing HL-60 cells permitted demonstration of nuclear lobulation, ELCS formation, and centrosome-MT movement concomitantly during RA-induced differentiation, implying independence between the cellular reorganization and apoptotic programs. RA appears to promote an inherent potential in HL-60 cells for cytoskeletal polarization, likely to be important for chemoattractant-directed cell migration, an established characteristic of mature granulocytes.
Copyright 2000 Academic Press.