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High throughput genomic technologies such as DNA microarrays facilitate the search for cancer-related genes and provide many candidates. However, it is difficult for an individual to functionally validate more than a handful of these genes using traditional approaches. For example, to confirm that a candidate gene is an oncogene, it is necessary to show that it can promote tumorigenic behavior, such as induce cellular transformation, anchorage-independent growth, proliferation, alter metastatic potential or other cancer-related phenotypes. To facilitate this work, we are developing multiplexed cell-based assays to simultaneously measure a number of phenotypes, such as changes in cell cycle, cell proliferation, mitotic index, resistance to apoptosis induced by various drugs, metastatic potential, ability to transform cells as measured by morphology and activation of signaling pathways. In this presentation, we report on the assay protocols, optimization of bioapplication measurements and readouts from the Cellomics Arrayscan®. Using a novel oncogene as an example, we demonstrate the utility of using HCS approaches to characterize the role of genes in cancer across a panel of cancer cell lines.

98th AACR Annual Meeting-- Apr 14-18, 2007; Los Angeles, CA