Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico, Ponce, PR 00717.
Experimental reconsideration of the utility of serum starvation as a method for synchronizing mammalian cells
Version of Record online: 2 JAN 2013
2009 International Federation for Cell Biology
Cell Biology International
Volume 33, Issue 1, pages 71–77, January 2009
How to Cite
Cooper, S. and Gonzalez-Hernandez, M. (2009), Experimental reconsideration of the utility of serum starvation as a method for synchronizing mammalian cells. Cell Biology International, 33: 71–77. doi: 10.1016/j.cellbi.2008.09.009
- Issue online: 2 JAN 2013
- Version of Record online: 2 JAN 2013
- Received 2 September 2008; accepted 22 September 2008
- Serum starvation;
- Cell cycle;
- G1 phase;
- Membrane elution
Accurate cell-size determinations support the prediction that serum starvation and related whole-culture methods cannot synchronize cells. Theoretical considerations predict that whole-culture methods of synchronization cannot synchronize cells. Upon serum starvation, the fraction of cells with a G1-phase amount of DNA increased, but the cell-size distribution is not narrowed. In true synchronization, the cell-size distribution should be narrower than the cell-size distribution of the original culture. In contrast, cells produced by a selective (i.e. non-whole-culture) method have a specific DNA content, a narrow size distribution, and divide synchronously. The general theory leading to the conclusion that whole-culture methods for synchronization do not work implies that one can generalize these serum-starvation results to other cell lines and other whole-culture methods, to conclude that these methods do not synchronize cells.