It has recently been described that cisplatin is an agent able to induce binucleated cells (BC) in cultured CHO cells. Both the origin and the significance of those cells within a population are unknown although several hypothesis have been suggested such as blocking of cytokinesis or cell fusion. Using interval photography we have found that at least two mechanisms are involved in the production of BC. These cells can arise in a culture as a result of an incomplete process of cell division, i.e. karyokinesis with incomplete cytokinesis or as a result of the mitotic division of a pre-existent BC. The mitotic division of a BC can give rise to different types of daughter cells. These BC sometimes enter mitosis but fail to divide and as a consequence they remain BC. When the process of division is successful (in the vast majority of cases), the results that have been found are either two mononucleated cells or one mononucleated and one binucleated cell. The possible implications and significance of BC and BC with micronuclei in a given population are discussed. © 1993.
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