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Int J Biol Sci 2007; 3(6):342-348. doi:10.7150/ijbs.3.342

Research Paper

Differences in Apoptosis and Cell Cycle Distribution between Human Melanoma Cell Lines UACC903 and UACC903(+6), before and after UV Irradiation

Qiuyang Zhang1, Yuanbin Chen2, Bi-Dar Wang1, Ping He3, Yan A. Su1

1. Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Washington, DC, USA
2. Department of Pathology, Loyola University Medical Center, Maywood, IL, USA
3. Division of Hematology, Center for Biological Evaluation and Research, FDA, Bethesda, MD, USA


Introduction of human chromosome 6 into malignant melanoma cell line UACC903 resulted in generation of the chromosome 6-mediated suppressed cell subline UACC903(+6) that displays attenuated growth rate, anchorage-dependency, and reduced tumorigenicity. We have showed that overexpression of a chromosome 6-encoded tumor suppressor gene led to partial suppression to UACC903 cell growth. We now describe the differences in apoptosis and cell cycle between UACC903 and UACC903(+6) before and after UV irradiation. MTT assay revealed 86.92±8.24% of UACC903 cells viable, significantly (p<0.01) higher than 48.76±5.31% of UACC903(+6), at 24 hr after 254-nm UV irradiation (40 J/M2). Before UV treatment, flow cytometry analysis revealed 6.06±0.20% apoptosis in UACC903, significantly (p=0.01) lower than 6.67±0.15% in UACC903(+6). The G0/G1, S and G2/M phase cells of UACC903 were, respectively, 54.10±0.59%, 22.31±0.50% and 16.85±0.25%, all significantly (p<0.01) different from the corresponding percentages (58.82±0.35%, 20.48±0.05%, and 13.17±0.45%) of UACC903(+6). After the UV treatment, UACC903 cells in apoptosis, G0/G1, S, and G2/M became 12.59±0.17%, 38.90±0.67%, 19.74±0.70%, and 27.01±0.66%, respectively, while UACC903(+6) cells were 24.16±0.48%, 37.97±0.62%, 19.20±0.52%, and 15.69±0.14%. TUNEL assay revealed 2.31±0.62% apoptosis in UACC903, significantly (p<0.01) lower than 9.60±1.14% of UACC903(+6), and a linear and exponential increase of apoptosis, respectively, in response to the UV treatment. These results indicate that UACC903(+6) cells have a greater tendency to undergo apoptosis and are thus much more sensitive to UV irradiation. Our findings further suggest a novel mechanism for chromosome 6-mediated suppression of tumorigenesis and metastasis, i.e., through increased cell death.

Keywords: Melanoma, UV irradiation, apoptosis, cell cycle arrest

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How to cite this article:
Zhang Q, Chen Y, Wang BD, He P, Su YA. Differences in Apoptosis and Cell Cycle Distribution between Human Melanoma Cell Lines UACC903 and UACC903(+6), before and after UV Irradiation. Int J Biol Sci 2007; 3(6):342-348. doi:10.7150/ijbs.3.342. Available from