Poster Presentation 2014 International Biophysics Congress

Characterization of fusion between mammalian tumor cells and mouse sperm (#258)

Qiang Chen 1 , Guang-Yi Jin 1 , Gui-Miao Lin 1 , Gai-Xia Xu 2 , Marie Chia-Mi Lin 1 , Zhi-Jia Zheng 1 , Xiao-Mei Wang 1 , Han-Ben Niu 2
  1. School of Medicine, Shenzhen University, Shenzhen, China
  2. College of Optoelectronic Engineering, Shenzhen University, Shenzhen, China

Besides fusing with egg and forming zygotes, spermatozoa also can fuse with somatic cells and forming chimeric cells. The fusion between spermatozoa and somatic cells shares similar molecular machinery that implicated in the sperm-egg fusion, and the chimeric cells usually have stem-cell-like properties. However, little data is available for the interaction between spermatozoa and tumor cells in vitro. Here we show that the mouse spermatozoa can fuse with cervical cancer HeLa cells and other kind of tumor cells. Under our improved experimental conditions, more than half HeLa cells can fuse with mouse spermatozoa, and the chimeric tumor cells have decreased attachment ability but increased movement property. The efficiency of sperm-tumor cell fusion depended on the co-culture time, cell density as well as cell types. Our results demonstrate that the direct contaction between spermatozoa and tumor cells may form novel chimeric tumor cells, and these cells have increased migration ability. The implications from this study promotes us to reassess the malignancy derived from sperm-tumor cell fusion, especially for direct contact and fusion between sperm and cervical cancer cells, so as to determine whether a protection should be carried out during the sex life for female cervical cancer patients.