Synthesis of alpha subunit of human chorionic gonadotrophin by presumptive HeLa cells

Janice Y. Chou, Bruce D. Weintraub, Saul W. Rosen, Jacqueline Whangpeng, Howard D. Sussman, Joan R. Haughom, J. C. Robinson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Several cell lines, originally thought to be derived from a human placenta at term but possibly HeLa-contaminated, have been studied. These cells secrete a protein indistinguishable immunochemically from the alpha subunit of chorionic gonadotropin but not the beta subunit of chorionic gonadotropin or placental lactogen. Complete chorionic gonadotropin was detected but amounted to less than 1% of the level of the alpha subunit. The cells also produce an alkaline phosphatase similar to placental alkaline phosphatase in immunochemical, gel-electrophoretic, and heat-denaturation properties. They induce tumor growth when inoculated into nude mice. These cells are aneuploid and have a model chromosome number of 66. The common HeLa karyologic markers, designated 1, 2, and 3, and A-type glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase are present in these cells. HeLa cells have not previously been shown to secrete the α subunit of hCG.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)589-594
Number of pages6
JournalIn Vitro
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1 1976
Externally publishedYes


  • gonadotrophin
  • human cells
  • placental proteins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental Biology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


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