Moore, S. R., Ritter, L. E., Gibbons, C. F. and Grosovsky, A. J. Spontaneous and Radiation-Induced Genomic Instability in Human Cell Lines Differing in Cellular TP53 Status. Radiat. Res. 164, 357–368 (2005).
Structural chromosomal rearrangements are commonly observed in tumor karyotypes and in radiation-induced genomic instability. Here we report the effects of TP53 deficiency on karyotypic stability before and after irradiation using related cells and clones differing in cellular TP53 status. The parental cell line, TK6, is a TP53 wild-type human B-lymphoblastoid line with a highly stable karyotype. In the two TK6 derivatives used here, TP53 has been inactivated by biochemical means (expression of HPV16 E6; TK6-5E) or genetic means (allelic inactivation; NH32). Biochemical inactivation of TP53 (TK6-5E) had little effect on the spontaneous karyotype, whereas allelic inactivation of TP53 (NH32) resulted in a modest increase in spontaneous karyotypic instability. After 2 Gy γ irradiation, the number of unstable clones derived from TP53-deficient cells was significantly elevated compared to the TP53 wild-type counterpart. Extensively destabilized clones were common after irradiation in the set of clones derived from NH32 cells, and one was observed in the set of TK6-5E clones; however, they were never observed in TK6-derived clones. In two of the irradiated NH32 clones, whole chromosomes or chromosome bands were preferentially involved in alterations. These results suggest that genomic instability may differ both quantitatively and qualitatively as a consequence of altered TP53 expression. Some of the results showing repeated and preferential chromosome involvement in aberrations support a model in which instability may be driven by cis mechanisms.