Asparagine Synthetase Activity of Mouse Leukemias

Science  03 May 1968:
Vol. 160, Issue 3827, pp. 533-535
DOI: 10.1126/science.160.3827.533


Various transplanted leukemias and normal tissues of the mouse were tested for asparagine synthetase activity. Leukemias susceptible to suppression by asparaginase have little or no synthetase activity. In contrast, leukemias insensitive to asparaginase exhibit substantial and often very high asparagine synthetase activity. Asparaginase-resistant variants of sensitive leukemias also have considerable synthetase activity. Thus the requirement by certain malignant cells of exogenous asparagine, which entails sensitivity to asparaginase, may be ascribed to lack of asparagine synthetase. Development of asparaginase-resistant variants from asparaginase-sensitive lines is consistently associated with acquisition of asparagine synthetase activity.