Regulation of cell proliferation and apoptosis in CHO-K1 cells by the coexpression of c-myc and bcl-2

Vasiliki Ifandi, Mohamed Al-Rubeai

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40 Citations (Scopus)


Proliferation and cell death are regarded as key targets for the optimization of animal cell culture processes and for the maximization of product yield. Although chemical and physical factors are vitally important, of primary interest is the utilization of genetic engineering to regulate cellular processes. CHO cells were first genetically modified to enhance proliferation rate in both suspension and monolayer cultures. Under the constitutive control of c-myc overexpression the CHO cultures showed an increase in growth rate and maximum cell number accompanied by a similar decrease in specific glucose consumption rate. Although the c-myc transfected cell line exhibited apoptosis at much lower rates than is widely reported and associated with the overexpression of c-Myc, it was nevertheless apparent that c-Myc was responsible for the induction of higher apoptotic rates when compared with the control cell line. Hence, the anti-apoptotic gene bcl-2 was also used to transfect the c-Myc CHO cell line, to reduce cell death. Overexpression of both oncoproteins resulted in a cell line that exhibited higher proliferation rates and maximum cell numbers, with a decrease in apoptosis when compared to the parental cell line. In conclusion, it was shown that Bcl-2 protein overexpression specifically abrogates c-Myc-induced apoptosis without affecting the c-Myc mitogenic function.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)671-677
Number of pages7
JournalBiotechnology Progress
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2005


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