Coriell Scientists Publish Study on Genetic Stability of LCLs


Lymphoblastoid cell lines are commonly used in genetic and genomic research. Once immortalized, these cells serve as a renewable source of DNA, but after a cell line has been passaged and expanded several times, how reliable is the genetic material it yields?

To answer that question, a team of researchers at the Coriell Institute investigated the stability of DNA extracted from several generations of expanded cell lines, and their paper on the topic, titled “Genetic and genomic stability across lymphoblastoid cell line expansions” was published recently in BMC Research Notes.

Lead author Laura Scheinfeldt, Ph.D., a principal investigator at Coriell, and the team used biomaterials from six individuals and compared genome-wide genetic variants in DNA extracted from blood against DNA extracted from three generations of expanded cell lines.

Their study found that single nucleotide variants were stable in DNA extracted from expanded cell lines, but structural variation was more difficult to characterize. In all, the researchers say their work shows that expanded LCLs are a reliable source of DNA for genome-wide association studies, but researchers should be more careful when using LCL DNA to study structural variation.

Co-authors on the study include Kelly Hodges, Jonathan Pevsner, Ph.D., Dorit Berlin, Ph.D., Nahid Turan, Ph.D., and Norman Gerry, Ph.D. This work was funded by a grant to the NIGMS Human Genetic Cell Repository (5U42GM115336).

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