Viscoelastic properties of transformed cells: role in tumor cell progression and metastasis formation

Biorheology. 1991;28(3-4):301-13. doi: 10.3233/bir-1991-283-419.


The micropipette aspiration technique was used to investigate the deformation properties of a panel of nontransformed and transformed rat fibroblasts derived from the same normal cell line. In this method, a step negative pressure is applied to the cell via a micropipette and the aspiration distance into the pipette as a function of time is determined using video techniques. A standard solid viscoelastic model was then used to analyze the viscoelastic properties of the cell. From these results, it is concluded that a direct correlation exists between an increase in deformability and progression of the transformed phenotype from a nontumorigenic cell line into a tumorigenic, metastatic cell line.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Line
  • Cell Transformation, Neoplastic / genetics
  • Cell Transformation, Neoplastic / pathology*
  • Elasticity
  • Fibroblasts / pathology*
  • Models, Biological
  • Neoplasm Metastasis / pathology*
  • Phenotype
  • Rats
  • Rheology
  • Video Recording
  • Viscosity