Drug-Induced Premature Chromosome Condensation (PCC) Protocols: Cytogenetic Approaches in Mitotic Chromosome and Interphase Chromatin

  • Eisuke Gotoh
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 523)


Chromosome analysis is a fundamental technique for cytogenetic studies. Chromosomes are conventionally prepared from mitotic cells arrested by colcemid block protocol. However, obtaining the mitotic chromosomes is often hampered under several circumstances. As a result, cytogenetic analysis will be sometimes difficult or even impossible in such cases. Premature chromosome condensation (PCC) is an alternative method that has proved to be a unique and useful way in chromosome analysis. Usually, PCC has been achieved following cell fusion mediated either by fusogenic viruses or by polyethylene glycol (cell-fusion PCC), but the cell-fusion PCC has several drawbacks. The novel drug-induced PCC using protein phosphatase inhibitors was introduced about 10 years ago. This method is much simple and easy even than the conventional mitotic chromosome preparation using colcemid block protocol and obtained PCC index (equivalent to mitotic index for metaphase chromosome) is much higher. Furthermore, this method allows the interphase chromatin to be condensed and visualized like mitotic chromosomes, thus opened the way for chromosome analysis not only in metaphase chromosomes but also in interphase chromatin. The drug-induced PCC has therefore proven the usefulness in cytogenetics and other cell biology fields.

Key words

cytogenetic study premature chromosome condensation (PCC) prematurely condensed chromosomes (PCCs) protein phosphatase inhibitors calyculin A okadaic acid mitotic index PCC index 



I wish to express my thanks to Prof. Srikumar Chellappan for recommending me to contribute this chapter.


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Copyright information

© Humana Press, a part of Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eisuke Gotoh
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Division of Genetic ResourcesNational Institute of Infectious DiseasesTokyoJapan
  2. 2.Department of RadiologyJikei University School of MedicineTokyoJapan

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