Transfection of a DNA locus that mediates the conversion of 10T1/2 fibroblasts to myoblasts

Cell. 1986 Dec 5;47(5):649-56. doi: 10.1016/0092-8674(86)90507-6.


Stable myoblast cell lines were isolated after a brief exposure of mouse fibroblasts (10T1/2 cells) to 5-azacytidine. We show that transfection of 10T1/2 cells with DNA from these azacytidine-induced myoblasts (or from mouse C2C12 myoblasts) results in myogenic conversion of approximately 1 in 15,000 transfected colonies. In contrast, transfection of 10T1/2 cells with DNA from nonmyogenic cells (parental 10T1/2 cell DNA) does not give rise to myoblast colonies. These results indicate that an azacytidine-induced structural modification (presumably demethylation) in the DNA of a single locus is sufficient to convert 10T1/2 cells into determined myoblasts.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Azacitidine / pharmacology
  • Cell Differentiation* / drug effects
  • Cell Line
  • DNA / genetics*
  • DNA / pharmacology
  • Fibroblasts / cytology*
  • Fibroblasts / drug effects
  • Methylation
  • Mice
  • Muscles / cytology*
  • Phenotype
  • Transfection


  • DNA
  • Azacitidine