B16 melanoma cell variants were used to determine if the metastatic properties of these cells could be correlated to distinct plasma membrane, microsome, and mitochondrial membrane lipid compositions and membrane-bound enzyme activities in high- and low-metastatic cell variants, respectively. The high-metastatic B16-F10 melanoma cell membranes had lower cholesterol/phospholipid ratios, lower arachidonic acid content, lower polyunsaturated fatty acid content, higher phosphatidylcholine/phosphatidylethanolamine ratios, and higher succinate cytochrome c reductase activity than those of B16-F1 melanoma cell membranes. No differences in cholesterol/phospholipid ratio were noted in the mitochondria. Na+-K+-adenosinetriphosphatase activity and solubility of 5′-nucleotidase activity were also similar. The data indicate that the membrane lipid composition of B16-F10 melanoma cells is distinct from that of B16-F1 melanoma cells and may help to elucidate the molecular basis for the different metastatic properties of these cell lines in vivo.


This investigation was supported primarily by Grant CA 24339 from the USPHS and, in part, by Grant GM 31651.

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