Lung cancer is a leading cause of cancer death worldwide. Some lung cancer patients correlate with a gas of radon besides smoking. To search for common chromosomal aberrations in lung cancer cell lines established from patients induced by different factors, a combined approach of chromosome sorting, forward and reverse chromosome painting was used to characterize karyotypes of two lung adenocarcinoma cell lines: A549 and GLC-82 with the latter line derived from a patient who has suffered long-term exposure to environmental radon gas pollution. The chromosome painting results revealed that complex chromosomal rearrangements occurred in these two lung adenocarcinoma cell lines. Thirteen and twenty-four abnormal chromosomes were identified in A549 and GLC-82 cell lines, respectively. Almost half of abnormal chromosomes in these two cell lines were formed by non-reciprocal translocations, the others were derived from deletions and duplication/or amplification in some chromosomal regions. Furthermore, two apparently common breakpoints, HSA8q24 and 12q14 were found in these two lung cancer cell lines.
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