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1.  Valproic acid decreases urothelial cancer cell proliferation and induces thrombospondin-1 expression 
BMC Urology  2012;12:21.
Prevention of bladder cancer recurrence is a central challenge in the management of this highly prevalent disease. The histone deacetylase inhibitor valproic acid (sodium valproate) has anti-angiogenic properties and has been shown to decrease bladder cancer growth in model systems. We have previously shown reduced expression of thrombospondin-1 in a mouse model and in human bladder cancer relative to normal urothelium. We speculated that inhibition of angiogenesis by valproate might be mediated by this anti-angiogenic protein.
Bladder cancer cell lines UMUC3 and T24 were treated with valproate or another histone deacetylase inhibitor, vorinostat, in culture for a period of three days. Proliferation was assessed by alamar blue reduction. Gene expression was evaluated by reverse transcription of RNA and quantitative PCR.
Proliferation assays showed treatment with valproate or vorinostat decreased proliferation in both cell lines. Histone deacetylase inhibition also increased relative expression of thrombospondin-1 up to 8 fold at 5 mM valproate.
Histone deacetylase inhibitors warrant further study for the prevention or treatment of bladder cancer.
PMCID: PMC3487994  PMID: 22898175
Bladder cancer; Valproic acid; Thrombospondin-1, Urothelial carcinoma; Gene expression
2.  Androgenic dependence of exophytic tumor growth in a transgenic mouse model of bladder cancer: a role for thrombospondin-1 
BMC Urology  2008;8:7.
Steroid hormones influence mitogenic signaling pathways, apoptosis, and cell cycle checkpoints, and it has long been known that incidence of bladder cancer (BC) in men is several times greater than in women, a difference that cannot be attributed to environmental or lifestyle factors alone. Castration reduces incidence of chemically-induced BC in rodents. It is unclear if this effect is due to hormonal influences on activation/deactivation of carcinogens or a direct effect on urothelial cell proliferation or other malignant processes. We examined the effect of castration on BC growth in UPII-SV40T transgenic mice, which express SV40 T antigen specifically in urothelium and reliably develop BC. Furthermore, because BC growth in UPII-SV40T mice is exophytic, we speculated BC growth was dependent on angiogenesis and angiogenesis was, in turn, androgen responsive.
Flat panel detector-based cone beam computed tomography (FPDCT) was used to longitudinally measure exophytic BC growth in UPII-SV40T male mice sham-operated, castrated, or castrated and supplemented with dihydrotestosterone (DHT). Human normal bladder and BC biopsies and mouse bladder were examined quantitatively for thrombospondin-1 (TSP1) protein expression.
Mice castrated at 24 weeks of age had decreased BC volumes at 32 weeks compared to intact mice (p = 0.0071) and castrated mice administered DHT (p = 0.0233; one-way ANOVA, JMP 6.0.3, SAS Institute, Inc.). Bladder cancer cell lines responded to DHT treatment with increased proliferation, regardless of androgen receptor expression levels. TSP1, an anti-angiogenic factor whose expression is inhibited by androgens, had decreased expression in bladders of UPII-SV40T mice compared to wild-type. Castration increased TSP1 levels in UPII-SV40T mice compared to intact mice. TSP1 protein expression was higher in 8 of 10 human bladder biopsies of normal versus malignant tissue from the same patients.
FPDCT allows longitudinal monitoring of exophytic tumor growth in the UPII-SV40T model of BC that bypasses need for chemical carcinogens, which confound analysis of androgen effects. Androgens increase tumor cell growth in vitro and in vivo and decrease TSP1 expression, possibly explaining the therapeutic effect of castration. This effect may, in part, explain gender differences in BC incidence and implies anti-androgenic therapies may be effective in preventing and treating BC.
PMCID: PMC2374790  PMID: 18433501
3.  Interstitial cystitis antiproliferative factor (APF) as a cell-cycle modulator 
BMC Urology  2004;4:3.
Interstitial cystitis (IC) is a chronic bladder disorder of unknown etiology. Antiproliferative factor (APF), a peptide found in the urine of IC patients, has previously been shown to decrease incorporation of thymidine by normal bladder epithelial cells. This study was performed to determine the effect of APF on the cell cycle of bladder epithelial cells so as to better understand its antiproliferative activity.
Explant cultures from normal bladder biopsy specimens were exposed to APF or mock control. DNA cytometry was performed using an automated image analysis system. Cell cycle phase fractions were calculated from the DNA frequency distributions and compared by two-way analysis of variance (ANOVA).
APF exposure produced statistically significant increases in the proportion of tetraploid and hypertetraploid cells compared to mock control preparations, suggesting a G2 and/or M phase cell cycle block and the production of polyploidy.
APF has a specific effect on cell cycle distributions. The presence of a peptide with this activity may contribute to the pathogenesis of interstitial cystitis through disruption of normal urothelial proliferation and repair processes.
PMCID: PMC411044  PMID: 15068487

Results 1-3 (3)