Medical Oncology and Tumor Pharmacotherapy

, Volume 1, Issue 4, pp 211–218 | Cite as

Clinical DNA flow cytometry

  • Bernhard Tribukait


Modal DNA values of tumours from various sites may exhibit (1) a diploid-near diploid distribution, (2) an exponential distribution in the tetraploid to triploid range, or (3) a log-normal distribution in the triploid to tetraploid range. Examples of these various types of distribution are non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (1), aneuploid prostate carcinoma (2), aneuploid colon, breast, cervix and testicular carcinomas (3). These differences indicate dissimilarities in tumour development. In aneuploid tumours from the same site both tetraploid exponential and triploid-tetraploid log-normal distributions may occur. In bladder carcinoma these are related to grade.

Modal DNA values in tumours are 10% higher than would be expected from modal chromosome numbers. This difference seems not to be due to a relative increase in large-sized chromosomes or due to technical shortcomings. Chromosome studies also show the possibility of the existence of near diploid malignant cells in grossly aneuploid tumours.

Modal DNA values are connected with functional tumour properties by the proportion of S-phase cells. The significance of the latter is exemplified by follow-up of patients with bladder and cervix carcinoma.

Key words

DNA Flow cytometry Human cancer Chromosomes Cell proliferation 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Laerum O D, Farsund T: Clinical application of flow cytometry: a review.Cytometry 2, 1 (1981).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Barlogie B, Raber M N, Schumann J, Johnson T S, Drewinko B, Swartzendruber D E, Göhde W, Andreeff M, Freireich E J: Flow cytometry in clinical cancer research.Cancer Res 43, 3982 (1983).PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Sandberg A A:The Chromosomes in Human Cancer and Leukemia. New York. Elsevier (1980).Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Atkin N B, Kay R: Prognostic significance of modal DNA value and other factors in malignant tumours, based on 1465 cases.Br J Cancer 40, 210 (1979).PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Tribukait B, Moberger G, Zetterberg A: Methodological aspects of rapid-flow cytofluorometry for DNA analysis of human urinary bladder cells, inFirst International Symposium in Pulse-Cytophotometry, p. 50. Ghent. European Press Medikon (1975).Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Tribukait B, Gustafson H, Esposti P: Ploidy and proliferation in human bladder tumours as measured by flow-cytofluorometric DNA-analysis and its relations to histopathology and cytology.Cancer 43, 1742 (1979).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Franzén S, Giertz G, Zajicek J: Cytological diagnosis of prostatic tumours by transrectal aspiration biopsy: a preliminary report.J Urol 32, 193 (1960).Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Baisch H, Göhde W, Linden W: Analysis of PCP-data to determine the fraction of cells in the various phases of cell cycle.Rad Environ Biophys 12, 31 (1975).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Tribukait B: Flow cytometry in surgical pathology and cytology of tumours of the genito-urinary tract, in Koss L G, Colemam D V (eds)Advances in Clinical Cytology, vol 2, pp. 163–189. New York. Masson (1984).Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Ewers S-B, Långström E, Baldetorp B, Killander D: Flow-cytometric DNA-analysis in primary breast carcinomas and clinicopathological correlations.Cytometry (in press).Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Schumann J: CNA distribution pattern in solid human tumours, in Büchner T, Hiddemann W, Schumann J (eds):Tumour Aneuploidy, Berlin, Springer (in press).Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Atkin N B, Mattinson G, Baker M C: A comparison of the DNA content and chromosome number of fifty human tumours.Br J Cancer 20, 87 (1966).PubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Paulete-Vanrell J: DNA content and chromosome number in twenty-five human carcinomas.Oncology 24, 48 (1970).PubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Granberg-Öhman I, Tribukait B, Wijkström H, Alin A, Berlin T: Chromosome and DNA cytometric study of a papillary carcinoma of the bladder with a high stemline and numerous double minutes.Cancer Genetics and Cytogenetics 5, 227 (1982).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Wijkström H, Granberg-Ohman I, Tribukait B: Chromosomal and DNA patterns in transitional cell bladder carcinoma.Cancer 53, 1718 (1984).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Skog S, Tribukait B: Analysis of cell flow and cell loss following X-irradiation using sequential investigation of the total number of cells in the various parts of the cell cycle.Cell Tissue Kinet (in press).Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Christensson B, Tribukait B, Biberfeld P: DNA content and proliferation in non-Hodgkin's lymphoma: flow cytofluorometric DNA analysis in relation to the Kiel classification, inProc Second Int. Conf. on Malignant Lymphomas, Lugano (in press).Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Tribukait B, Gustafson H, Esposti P-L: The significance of ploidy and proliferation in the clinical and biological evaluation of bladder tumours: a study of 100 untreated cases.Br J Urol 54, 130 (1982).PubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Tribukait B, Hammarberg C, Rubio C: Ploidy and proliferation patterns in colo-rectal adenocarcinomas related to Dukes' classification and to histopathological differentiation.Acta Path Microbiol Immunol Scand Sect A91, 89 (1983).Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Kreicbergs A, Silfverswärd C, Tribukait B: Flow DNA analysis of primary bone tumours. Relationship between cellular DNA content and histopathologic classification.Cancer 53, 129 (1984).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Hansson J, Tribukait B, Lewensohn R, Ringborg U: Flow cytofluorometric DNA analyses of metastases of human malignant melanomas.Analyt Quant Cytol 25, 99 (1982).Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Taylor I W, Musgroye E A, Friedlander M L, Foo M S, Hedley D W: The influence of age on the DNA ploidy levels of breast tumours.Eur J Cancer Clin Oncol 19, 623 (1983).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Friedlander M L, Taylor I W, Russell P, Musgrove E A, Hedley D H, Tattersall M H N: Ploidy as a prognostic factor in ovarian cancer.Int J Gynec Path 2, 55 (1983).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Schwabe H W, Adolphs H-D, Vogel J: Flowcytophotometric studies in renal carcinoma.Urol Res 11, 121 (1983).PubMedGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Coulson P B, Thornthwaite J T, Woolley T W, Sugarbaker E V, Seckinger D: Prognostic indicators including DNA histogram type, receptor content, and staging related to human breast cancer patient survival.Cancer Res (in press).Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Atkin N B: Prognostic value of cytogenetic studies of tumours of the female genital tract, in Koss L G, Coleman D V (eds):Advances in Clinical Cytology, vol. 2, pp. 103–121. New York, Masson (1984).Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Fu Y S, Reagan J W, Fu A S, Janiga K E: Adenocarcinoma and mixed carcinoma of the uterine cervix. II. Prognostic value of nuclear DNA analysis.Cancer 49, 2571 (1982).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Auer G, Zetterberg A: The prognostic significance of nuclear DNA content in malignant tumours of breast, prostate, and cartilage, in Koss L G, Coleman D V (eds):Advances in Clinical Cytology, vol. 2, pp. 123–134. New York, Masson (1984).Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    Friedlander M L, Hedley D W, Taylor, I W, Russell P, Coates A S, Tattersall M H N: Influence of cellular DNA content on survival in advanced ovarian cancer.Cancer Res 44, 397 (1984).PubMedGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Wolley R C, Schreiber K, Koss L G, Karas M, Sherman A: DNA distribution in human colon carcinoma and its relationship to clinical behavior.J Natl Cancer Inst 69, 15 (1982).PubMedGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Gustafson H, Tribukait B, Esposti P-L: DNA profile and tumour progression in patients with superficial bladder tumours.Urol Res 10, 13 (1982).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Ising K: Effect of heterologous transplantation on chromosomes of ascites tumours.Acta Path. Microbiol. Scand. Suppl. 127 (1958).Google Scholar
  33. 33.
    Nielsén K: Chromosomal evolution in the Ehrlich-Lettré complex of hyperdiploid mouse ascites tumours: results from seven laboratory strains.Hereditas 84, 77 (1976).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    Klein G: Mechanisms of carcinogenesis, in: Nygaard O F, Adler H I, Sinclair W K (eds)Proc. 5th Int. Congr. Radiat. Res., p. 869. New York, Academic Press (1975).Google Scholar
  35. 35.
    Rowley J D: Human oncogene locations and chromosome aberrations.Nature 301, 290 (1983).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    Tribukait B, Granberg-Öhman I, Wijström H: Comparative flow-cytometric DNA and cytogenetic studies in transitional cell bladder carcinoma. A discussion of the differences in modal values achieved by the two methods.Cytometry (in press).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Humana Press Inc. 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bernhard Tribukait
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Medical RadiobiologyKarolinska InstituteStockholmSweden

Personalised recommendations