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The 5-methylationcytosine (5-MC) DNA content of murine embryonic fibroblasts arrested in G1 by four growth conditions (Gc, Gn, Gd, and Gs) were hypermethylated relative to rapidly growing (RG) fibroblasts. Normal human keratinocytes (NHK) arrested in G1 by suspension were hypermethylated relative to RG cultures. Four RG cultures of epidermoid carcinoma cells (ECC) were hypomethylated relative to RG NHK cultures, and two cultures (SCC25 and A431) were further hypomethylated by SUS-induced arrest. Linear regression analyses established a positive linear correlation between growth rate and 5-MC content for three murine fibroblasts lines, and a negative correlation for both NHK and ECC lines.
The effect of okadaic acid (OA) on proto-oncogene protein expression of c-neu, c-myc, v-rasH, EGFR, and phosphotyrosine-containing phosphoproteins (P-Tyr) was investigated in rapidly growing (RG) normal human keratinocytes (NHK) and in SV-40 virally-transformed keratinocytes (SVK) cultured in a growth factor supplemented serum-free medium as assessed by indirect immunofluorescence microscopy. P-Tyr positively stains cell surface antigens (cytoplasm) diffusely at monopolar sites in RG NHK cultures. OA-treatment intensifies cytoplasmic P-Tyr staining at localized monopolar intercellular focal adhesion (IFA) sites with reduced cytoplasmic staining. P-Tyr expression was predominate at IFA sites with little cytoplasmic staining in RG SVK cultures. OA-treatment increased monopolar P-Tyr staining and cytoplasmic staining. OA-treatment in RG NHK cultures intensified cytoplasmic staining of c-myc and EGFR (epidermal growth factor receptor) expression. OA-treatment in RG NHK and SVK cultures intensified c-neu staining at monopolar IFA sites and intensified c-neu staining at both cytoplasmic and bipolar IFA sites in RG SVK cells. OA was especially cytotoxic for SVK cells. RA treatment decreased c-neu expression in RG NHK cultures while TPA treatment has a lesser effect on both cytoplasmic and IFA sites. RA treatment also decreased P-Tyr staining in both NHK and SVK cells. Again, TPA had a lesser inhibitory effect on P-Tyr staining pattern. RA-treatment had a similar effect on P-Tyr staining of RG cultures of a mouse fibroblast cell line. These results confirm the generality of OA, RA and TPA on the regulation of oncogene expression in both normal and malignantly transformed keratinocytes.