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Molecular cytogenetics in metaphase and interphase cells for cancer and genetic research, diagnosis and prognosis. Application in tissue sections and cell suspensions

Published: May 15, 2002
Genet. Mol. Res. 1 (2) : 117-127
Cite this Article:
(2002). Molecular cytogenetics in metaphase and interphase cells for cancer and genetic research, diagnosis and prognosis. Application in tissue sections and cell suspensions. Genet. Mol. Res. 1(2): gmr0013.
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Abstract

As the pioneer among molecular cytogenetics techniques, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) allows identification of specific sequences in a structurally preserved cell, in metaphase or interphase. This technique, based on the complementary double-stranded nature of DNA, hybridizes labeled specific DNA (probe). The probe, bound to the target, will be developed into a fluorescent signal. The fact that the signal can be detected clearly, even when fixed in interphase, improves the accuracy of the results, since in some cases it is extremely difficult to obtain mitotic samples. FISH is still used mostly in research, but there are diagnostic applications. New nomenclature is being developed in order to define many of the aberrations that were not distinguished before FISH. Prenatal diagnosis of aneuploidies and malignancies are promptly detected with FISH, which is very useful in critical cases. In some tumors, where chromosomal abnormalities are too complicated to classify manually, the technique of comparative genomic hybridization (CGH), a competitive FISH, allows examiners to determine complete or partial gain or loss of chromosomes. CGH results allow the classification of many tumor cell lines and along with other complementary techniques, like microdissection-FISH, PRINS, etc., increase the possibility of choosing an appropriate treatment for cancer patients.

As the pioneer among molecular cytogenetics techniques, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) allows identification of specific sequences in a structurally preserved cell, in metaphase or interphase. This technique, based on the complementary double-stranded nature of DNA, hybridizes labeled specific DNA (probe). The probe, bound to the target, will be developed into a fluorescent signal. The fact that the signal can be detected clearly, even when fixed in interphase, improves the accuracy of the results, since in some cases it is extremely difficult to obtain mitotic samples. FISH is still used mostly in research, but there are diagnostic applications. New nomenclature is being developed in order to define many of the aberrations that were not distinguished before FISH. Prenatal diagnosis of aneuploidies and malignancies are promptly detected with FISH, which is very useful in critical cases. In some tumors, where chromosomal abnormalities are too complicated to classify manually, the technique of comparative genomic hybridization (CGH), a competitive FISH, allows examiners to determine complete or partial gain or loss of chromosomes. CGH results allow the classification of many tumor cell lines and along with other complementary techniques, like microdissection-FISH, PRINS, etc., increase the possibility of choosing an appropriate treatment for cancer patients.

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