Telomere shortening is linked to a range of different human diseases, hence reliable measurement methods are needed to uncover such associations. Among the plethora of telomere length measurement methods, qPCR is reported as easy to conduct and a cost-effective approach to study samples with low DNA amounts.
Cancer cells’ telomere length was evaluated by relative and absolute qPCR methods.
Robust and reproducible telomere length measurements were optimized taking into account a careful reference gene selection and by knowing the cancer cells ploidy. qPCR data were compared to “gold standard” measurement from terminal restriction fragment (TRF).
Our study provides guidance and recommendations for accurate telomere length measurement by qPCR in cancer cells, taking advantage of our expertise in telomere homeostasis investigation in primary cutaneous T-cell lymphomas. Furthermore, our data emphasize the requirement of samples with both, high DNA quality and high tumor cells representation.

© 2020 The Authors. Cancer Medicine published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.