Apoptosis questions

David Voehringer ylek at utmdacc.uth.tmc.edu
Tue Jun 27 17:05:57 EST 1995

>        I am currently working with an androgen independent prostate 
>cancer cell line.  Using the Oncor ApopTag kit, I have gotten beautiful 
>pictures of cells undergoing apoptosis, however, there are a few 
>phenomenas that I notice that I can't explain- namely:
>        1. Apoptosis is supposed to be marked by cell shrinkage whereas 
>my cells (which underwent ionizing irradiation) are markedly larger than 
>the control cells.

Cells undergoing apoptosis do tend to shrink during the loss of cytoplasm as 
apoptotic bodies are formed and released.  Cells undergoing radiation induced 
cell death will swell if they are undergoing necrosis.  What you may be 
observing are necrotic cells, which also contain degraded DNA, stained 
positive by the ApopTag Kit.  Also, what dose range are you using? 

David W. Voehringer
Department of Experimental Radiotherapy
Univ. of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
1515 Holcombe Bvld.
Houston, Tx. 77030
(713) 792-3797

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