Aneuploidy: cells losing their balance

UMMS Affiliation

Program in Gene Function and Expression; Program in Molecular Medicine



Document Type


Medical Subject Headings

*Aneuploidy; Animals; Embryonic Development; Gene Dosage; Gene Duplication; Humans; Mice; Models, Genetic; Neoplasms


Cancer Biology | Cell Biology | Cellular and Molecular Physiology | Developmental Biology | Genetics and Genomics | Molecular Genetics


A change in chromosome number that is not the exact multiple of the haploid karyotype is known as aneuploidy. This condition interferes with growth and development of an organism and is a common characteristic of solid tumors. Here, we review the history of studies on aneuploidy and summarize some of its major characteristics. We will then discuss the molecular basis for the defects caused by aneuploidy and end with speculations as to whether and how aneuploidy, despite its deleterious effects on organismal and cellular fitness, contributes to tumorigenesis.

Rights and Permissions

Citation: Genetics. 2008 Jun;179(2):737-46. doi: 10.1534/genetics.108.090878. Link to article on publisher's site


At the time of publication, Eduardo Torres was not yet affiliated with the University of Massachusetts Medical School.

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID