Werner's syndrome: proliferation in vitro of clones of cells bearing chromosome translocations

Am J Hum Genet. 1984 Mar;36(2):387-97.


Each of several cultures of Werner's syndrome (WS) fibroblasts and lymphoblasts examined was found to be composed of one or several clones of cells with mutated chromosome complements. Two "sister" fibroblasts cell lines (FCLs) that were derived from a mixture of explants cut from the same WS skin biopsy were found to have completely different rearranged chromosome complements. Daily observation of the skin explants from which these two sister FCLs were derived revealed not only that no more than a few fibroblasts ever migrated from a given explant but also that fibroblasts migrated from only a few of the explants. Two of three lymphoblastoid cell lines (LCLs), each probably developed as an independent clone from a different cell from the same WS blood sample, were mosaic, comprised of cells having both normal and rearranged chromosome complements. The third LCL studied, although nonmosaic, had a rearranged chromosome complement, but one that was completely different from those in the other two lines. Based on the observations described, hypotheses have been formulated to explain both the preponderance in long-term WS cultures of clones with mutated chromosome complements and the abbreviated lifespan characteristic of WS fibroblast cultures.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cell Division*
  • Cell Line
  • Cell Transformation, Viral
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Crossing Over, Genetic*
  • Fibroblasts / ultrastructure
  • Herpesvirus 4, Human
  • Humans
  • Karyotyping
  • Lymphocytes / microbiology
  • Lymphocytes / ultrastructure
  • Male
  • Sister Chromatid Exchange*
  • Translocation, Genetic*
  • Werner Syndrome / genetics*
  • Werner Syndrome / pathology