anchorage dependence
The necessity for attachment (and spreading) in order that a cell will grow and divide in culture. Loss of anchorage dependence seems to be associated with greater independence from external growth control and is probably one of the best correlates of tumorigenic events in vivo. Anchorage independence is usually detected by cloning cells in soft agarose; only anchorage-independent cells will grow and divide (as they will in suspension).

Dictionary of molecular biology. 2004.

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