Some strains of are known to produce an extracellular cytotoxin that causes vacuolation in cultured mammalian cells. Screening for such strains makes use of HeLa cells which may not be sensitive enough to detect minimal changes. The aim of this study was to develop a more sensitive cell line. Vacuole formation was examined in HeLa cells, as well as four other cell lines established in this laboratory by ammonium chloride induction. Among five cell lines tested, LYM-1 cells were most sensitive for the detection of intracellular vacuolation with this agent. Loss of cell viability of LYM-1 and HeLa cells induced by culture supernates was also examined: LYM-1 were more sensitive than HeLa cells. Cell death was not always accompanied by vacuole formation. This suggests that the mechanism whereby cell death occurs must be different from that for vacuole formation. LYM-1 cells may be useful when measuring vacuole formation and cell death of the cultured cells induced by culture supernates of clinical isolates of .


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