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Br J Cancer. 1996 Feb;73(3):323-6.

The effects of beta-human chorionic gonadotrophin on the in vitro growth of bladder cancer cell lines.

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Academic Unit of Reproductive Physiology, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, St. Bartholomew's Hospital, West Smithfield, London, UK.


The effects of human chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG) and its subunits on in vitro bladder cancer cell growth have been assessed using the a tetrazolium salt reduction assay (MTT). Intact hCG, alpha-hCG and beta-core hCG all had no effect on cell growth, while beta-hCG increased MTT reduction in all four bladder cancer lines tested. The magnitude of beta-hCG stimulation was maximal in the T24 line, which does not itself produce beta-hCG and appeared to be correspondingly lower in beta-hCG-secreting lines. The addition of antibodies to beta-hCG inhibited MTT reduction among high secretors but failed to inhibit MTT reduction in non-beta-hCG producers. These results are consistent with the poor prognosis associated with beta-hCG expression by bladder tumours in vivo and suggest an autocrine/paracrine stimulation of tumour growth by endogenously produced beta-hCG.

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