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J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2012;75(13-15):788-99. doi: 10.1080/15287394.2012.690325.

Everolimus enhances gemcitabine-induced cytotoxicity in bladder-cancer cell lines.

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Genetic Service, Cytogenetic Laboratory, Hospital Center of Trás-os-Montes and Alto Douro, Vila Real, Portugal.


The purpose of this study was to determine whether everolimus, a rapamycin derivative, might significantly enhance the cytotoxicity of gemcitabine, an antitumor drug, in two human bladder-cancer cell lines. Human bladder-cancer T24 and 5637 cells were incubated with gemcitabine and everolimus in a range of concentrations either alone or in combination for 72 h. Flow cytometry, comet assay, MTT method and optical microscopy were used to assess cell proliferation, cell cycle, DNA damage, and morphological alterations. Gemcitabine exerted an inhibitory effect on T24 and 5637 cell proliferation, in a concentration-dependent manner. Everolimus significantly reduced proliferation of 5637 bladder cancer cells (IC₃₀) at 1 μM), whereas T24 demonstrated marked resistance to everolimus treatment. A significant antiproliferative effect was obtained combining gemcitabine (100 nM) with everolimus (0.05-2 μM) with an arrest of cell cycle at S phase. Furthermore, an increase in frequency of DNA damage, apoptotic bodies, and apoptotic cells was observed when T24 and 5637 cancer cells were treated simultaneously with both drugs. Data show that in vitro combination produced a more potent antiproliferative effect when compared with single drugs.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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