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Journal Articles Journal of visualized experiments : JoVE Year : 2013

A Sensitive Method to Quantify Senescent Cancer Cells


Human cells do not indefinitely proliferate. Upon external and/or intrinsic cues, cells might die or enter a stable cell cycle arrest called senescence. Several cellular mechanisms, such as telomere shortening and abnormal expression of mitogenic oncogenes, have been shown to cause senescence. Senescence is not restricted to normal cells; cancer cells have also been reported to senesce. Chemotherapeutical drugs have been shown to induce senescence in cancer cells. However, it remains controversial whether senescence prevents or promotes tumorigenesis. As it might eventually be patient-specific, a rapid and sensitive method to assess senescence in cancer cell will soon be required. To this end, the standard β-galactosidase assay, the currently used method, presents major drawbacks: it is time consuming and not sensitive. We propose here a flow cytometry-based assay to study senescence on live cells. This assay offers the advantage of being rapid, sensitive, and can be coupled to the immunolabeling of various cellular markers.

Dates and versions

hal-01762011 , version 1 (09-04-2018)



Cahu J, Brigitte Sola. A Sensitive Method to Quantify Senescent Cancer Cells. Journal of visualized experiments : JoVE, 2013, ⟨10.3791/50494⟩. ⟨hal-01762011⟩
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