Variegated translocation mosaicism in human skin fibroblast cultures

Cytogenet Cell Genet. 1975;15(5):282-98. doi: 10.1159/000130526.


The term "variegated translocation mosaicism" is used to describe the repeated occurrence, within cultures of human skin fibroblasts, of a multiplicity of chromosomal rearrangements. With respect to the frequencies of such cytogenetically aberrant clones we found that they (1) were not detectable in routine diagnostic skin fibroblast cultures from 29 subjects with a wide variety of indications for biopsy; (2) were not detectable during in vitro aging of diploid strains with four normal individuals; (3) could be detected after rescue from bacterial contamination of a culture from an otherwise normal diploid male; (4) occurred with high frequencies in independent cultures from another apparently normal subject; (5) occurred with high frequencies in multiple biopsies obtained at autopsy from a patient with Werner's syndrome who died of sepsis; (6) were of pseudodiploid nature; and (7) involved a different spectrum of chromosomes in different individuals. A consistent association with mycoplasma contamination could not be made.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Child, Preschool
  • Chromosome Aberrations*
  • Chromosomes*
  • Clone Cells
  • Culture Media
  • Female
  • Fibroblasts / ultrastructure*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mosaicism*
  • Mycoplasma Infections / genetics
  • Skin / ultrastructure*
  • Translocation, Genetic*
  • Werner Syndrome / genetics


  • Culture Media