Gridlike patterns of differing cell density were observed in evenly seeded cell monolayers. Such patterns were obtained in five of six cell lines tested, suggesting widespread occurrence. The mechanism appears to involve small, transient temperature changes related to incubator tray structure. The very short time course of appearance of the patterns implicates attachment rather than growth as the critically affected factor. Impaired adhesion or directed sedimentation resulting from thermally induced microcurrents in the medium are the two most likely mechanisms.

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