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Publication Detail

Title: Integrated one- and two-photon imaging platform reveals clonal expansion as a major driver of mutation load.

Authors: Wiktor-Brown, Dominika M; Kwon, Hyuk-Sang; Nam, Yoon Sung; So, Peter T C; Engelward, Bevin P

Published In Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, (2008 Jul 29)

Abstract: The clonal expansion of mutant cells is hypothesized to be an important first step in cancer formation. To understand the earliest stages of tumorigenesis, a method to identify and analyze clonal expansion is needed. We have previously described transgenic Fluorescent Yellow Direct Repeat (FYDR) mice in which cells that have undergone sequence rearrangements (via homologous recombination events) express a fluorescent protein, enabling fluorescent labeling of phenotypically normal cells. Here, we develop an integrated one- and two-photon imaging platform that spans four orders of magnitude to permit rapid quantification of clonal expansion in the FYDR pancreas in situ. Results show that as mice age there is a significant increase in the number of cells within fluorescent cell clusters, indicating that pancreatic cells can clonally expand with age. Importantly, >90% of fluorescent cells in aged mice result from clonal expansion, rather than de novo sequence rearrangements at the FYDR locus. The spontaneous frequency of sequence rearrangements at the FYDR locus is on par with that of other classes of mutational events. Therefore, we conclude that clonal expansion is one of the most important mechanisms for increasing the burden of mutant cells in the mouse pancreas.

PubMed ID: 18647827 Exiting the NIEHS site

MeSH Terms: Aging; Animals; DNA Mutational Analysis; Female; Fluorescent Dyes/pharmacology; Mice; Mice, Inbred C57BL; Mitosis; Models, Genetic; Mutation*; Pancreas/cytology; Pancreas/metabolism; Photons*; Recombination, Genetic; Time Factors; Transgenes

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