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1.  ROS generation via NOX4 and its utility in the cytological diagnosis of urothelial carcinoma of the urinary bladder 
BMC Urology  2011;11:22.
Background
Reactive oxygen species (ROS) production via NADPH oxidase (NOX) contributes to various types of cancer progression. In the present research, we examined the pathobiological role of NADPH oxidase (NOX)4-mediated generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in urothelial carcinoma (UC) of the urinary bladder, and demonstrated the utility of ROS labeling in urine cytology.
Methods
NOX4 gene was silenced in vivo and in vitro by NOX4 siRNA transfection with or without atlocollagen. Cell cycle and measurement of ROS were analyzed by flowcytometry. Orthotopic implantation animal model was used in vivo experiment. NOX4 expression in urothelial carcinoma cells was observed by immunohistochemical analysis using surgical specimens of human bladder cancer. Urine cytology was performed after treatment with ROS detection reagents in addition to Papanicolaou staining.
Results
NOX4 was overexpressed in several UC cell lines and the NOX inhibitor, diphenylene iodonium reduced intracellular ROS and induced p16-dependent cell cycle arrest at the G1 phase. Moreover, silencing of NOX4 by siRNA significantly reduced cancer cell growth in vivo as assessed in an orthotopic mouse model. Immunohistochemistry demonstrated high expression of NOX4 in low grade/non-invasive and high grade/invasive UC including precancerous lesions such as dysplasia but not in normal urothelium. Then, we assessed the usefulness of cytological analysis of ROS producing cells in urine (ROS-C). Urine samples obtained from UC cases and normal controls were treated with fluorescent reagents labeling the hydrogen peroxide/superoxide anion and cytological atypia of ROS positive cells were analyzed. As a result, the sensitivity for detection of low grade, non-invasive UC was greatly increased (35% in conventional cytology (C-C) vs. 75% in ROS-C), and the specificity was 95%. Through ROS-C, we observed robust improvement in the accuracy of follow-up urine cytology for cases with previously diagnosed UC, especially in those with low grade/non-invasive cancer recurrence (0% in C-C vs. 64% in ROS-C).
Conclusions
This is the first report demonstrating that ROS generation through NOX4 contributes to an early step of urothelial carcinogenesis and cancer cell survival. In addition, cytology using ROS labeling could be a useful diagnostic tool in human bladder cancer.
doi:10.1186/1471-2490-11-22
PMCID: PMC3215170  PMID: 22032647
2.  Clinical significance of subepithelial growth patterns in non-muscle invasive bladder cancer 
BMC Urology  2011;11:17.
Background
We evaluated the clinical significance and prognostic value of histopathological features of bladder cancer, such as subepithelial growth patterns and tumor growth pattern at the invasion front.
Methods
In total, 130 patients newly diagnosed with non-muscle invasive bladder cancer and underwent transurethral resection between 1998 and 2009 were enrolled. Subepithelial growth patterns consisting of endophytic growth pattern (EGP) and von Brunn's nest involvement (VBNI) were investigated using hematoxylin and eosin-stained slides, and their frequency of occurrence, prognostic value, and correlation with other clinicopathological features was evaluated.
Results
EGP and VBNI were found in 40 (30.8%) and 5 (3.9%) of the 130 cases, respectively. Of the 26 pT1 tumors, the growth pattern at the invasion front was trabecular in 17 (65.4%) and infiltrative in 9 (34.6%). Although 8 (47.1%) of 17 trabecular tumors coexisted with EGP, no cases with infiltrative tumors had EGP (p = 0.023). VBNI correlated with high tumor grades (p = 0.006) and lymphovascular involvement (p = 0.026). The multivariate Cox proportional hazards analysis revealed that tumor diameter less than 3 cm (p = 0.04) and intravesical bacillus Calmette-Guérin therapy (p = 0.004) were independent favorable prognostic factors for recurrence-free survival, whereas tumor stage was an independent poor prognostic factor for disease progression (p = 0.006).
Conclusions
Subepithelial growth patterns were not a significant prognostic factor in this study. Additionally, no tumors with an infiltrative growth pattern coexisted with EGP, suggesting that determining the presence of EGP might be helpful for managing non-muscle invasive bladder cancers.
doi:10.1186/1471-2490-11-17
PMCID: PMC3167754  PMID: 21816111
bladder cancer; endophytic growth pattern; prognostic factor; infiltrative pattern
3.  Cyclooxygenase 2-dependent and independent activation of Akt through casein kinase 2α contributes to human bladder cancer cell survival 
BMC Urology  2011;11:8.
Background
Survival rate for patients presenting muscle invasive bladder cancer is very low, and useful therapeutic target has not been identified yet. In the present study, new COX2 downstream signals involved in urothelial carcinoma cell survival were investigated in vitro and in vivo.
Methods
COX2 gene was silenced by siRNA transfection. Orthotopic implantation animal model and transurethral instillation of siRNA with atelocollagen was constructed to examine the effects of COX2 knockdown in vivo. Cell cycle was examined by flowcytoketry. Surgical specimens derived from patients with urinary bladder cancer (all were initially diagnosed cases) were used for immunohistochemical analysis of the indicated protein expression in urothelial carcinoma cells.
Results
Treatment with the COX2 inhibitor or knockdown of COX2 reduced expression of casein kinase (CK) 2 α, a phophorylated Akt and urokinase type plasminogen activator (uPA), resulting in p27 induction, cell cycle arrest at G1 phase and cell growth suppression in human urothelial carcinoma cell lines expressing COX2. Silencing of CK2α exhibited the similar effects. Even in UMUC3 cells lacking the COX2 gene, COX2 inhibition also inhibited cell growth through down-regulation of the CK2α-Akt/uPA axis. The mouse orthotropic bladder cancer model demonstrated that the COX2 inhibitor, meloxicam significantly reduced CK2α, phosphorylated Akt and uPA expression, whereas induced p27 by which growth and invasiveness of bladder cancer cells were strongly inhibited. Immunohistochemically, high expression of COX2, CK2α and phosphorylated form of Akt was found in high-grade, invasive carcinomas as well as carcinoma in situ, but not in low-grade and noninvasive phenotypes.
Conclusions
COX2-dependent and independent activation of CK2α-Akt/uPA signal is mainly involved in urothelial carcinoma cell survival, moreover, not only COX2 but also CK2α could be direct targets of COX2 inhibitors.
doi:10.1186/1471-2490-11-8
PMCID: PMC3111585  PMID: 21592330
cyclooxygenase 2; urothelial carcinoma; casein kinase 2α; Akt

Results 1-3 (3)