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Tumor cells immortal? - (Mar/25/2005 )

It says that cancer cells are immortal cells, and i wonder if i extract my cells from a tumor would these cells be immortal or mortal? huh.gif



they may be immortal. But only the cell culture will tell the truth...

For immortalized properties, cell should
be independent of growth factors to divide them
be independant of matrix attachment
have an hyperactive telomerase (if not they divide them until crisis where they are quite quiescent).
That are three basics properties of immortal cells.
But there are other cell lines that are immortal and must adhere little to plate for efficient division (such Hek 293 cells)


The cells may be immortal but they may not grow in tissue culture. Cancer cells are generally immortal(-depends on your definition) when grown under the "right conditions". Growing in a TC flask is a very artificial place for a human (derived) cell to find itself and most will not grow under these conditions.


Sorry me again. Forgot to add that I think Fred_33 (no offense) may be confusing immortaliy with a Transformed phenotype? A cell can be immortal and still require growth factors and matrix attachement. Totally agree with the telomerase though.


yep i made a mistake and would say that they can grow without having strong contacts with other cells, and at best, they can form clones (1 cell alone keep the power of dividing herself).
I'm sincerely sorry for that mistake...


Go to:

For lots of info on tranformed, immortal, and cancer cells.

Basically immortal cells never reach senescence, which is when cells reach reproductive wall as it were, and lose their strength multiplying. Transformed cells are independant of matrix attachments to certain extents (they still love the stuff and prefer it!) and don't react to conatact inhibition, i.e. they proceed to multiply past confluency (think of it as the flaky skin of culture, they create too many cells and start to peel off and bulk up).

in the case of 3t3 cells which i use the cells were not retrieved from a mouse cancer but instead treated to gain these aspects.

Again its all there in the link, with plenty of cross referencing.


"Fear da player not da cells"