Bladder stretch alters urinary heparin-binding epidermal growth factor and antiproliferative factor in patients with interstitial cystitis

Toby C. Chai, Chen Ou Zhang, Joanna L. Shoenfelt, Harry W. Johnson, John W. Warren, Susan Keay

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

75 Scopus citations


Purpose: The etiology of interstitial cystitis is unknown. Urine from patients with interstitial cystitis has been shown to inhibit urothelial proliferation through a putative antiproliferative factor and to contain decreased levels of heparin-binding epidermal growth factor-like growth factor (HB-EGF) compared to controls. Stretch of detrusor smooth muscle cells is known to stimulate HB-EGF production. Because bladder hydrodistention sometimes alleviates the symptoms of interstitial cystitis, we determined whether the stretch stimulus of hydrodistention alters antiproliferative factor activity and/or HB-EGF in interstitial cystitis urine specimens. Materials and Methods: Urine was collected immediately before, and 2 to 4 hours and 2 weeks after hydrodistention from 15 patients with symptoms and cystoscopic findings compatible with interstitial cystitis and 13 controls. Hydrodistention was performed with the subject under general or regional anesthesia and bladders were distended to 80 cm. water 3 times. Urinary HB- EGF was measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and urinary antiproliferative factor activity was determined by measuring 3H-thymidine uptake by normal human bladder urothelial cells. Results: Hydrodistention significantly increased urinary HB-EGF in patients with interstitial cystitis toward normal control values (before distention p = 0.003, 2 weeks after distention p = 0.67). Urine antiproliferative factor activity decreased significantly after hydrodistention in patients with interstitial cystitis. However, antiproliferative factor activity in interstitial cystitis and control specimens was still statistically different 2 weeks after distention (before distention p = 0.0000004, 2 weeks after distention p = 0.04). Conclusions: Bladder stretch increased HB-EGF and conversely reduced antiproliferative factor activity in urine from patients with interstitial cystitis but not controls up to 2 weeks after distention. These results provide additional evidence for the possible role of antiproliferative factor and decreased HB-EGF in the pathophysiology of interstitial cystitis. To our knowledge this is also the first human study to show that in vivo bladder stretch can alter urinary factors that regulate cell growth.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1440-1444
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Urology
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • Bladder
  • Cystitis, interstitial
  • Epidermal growth factor
  • Growth substances
  • Heparin


Dive into the research topics of 'Bladder stretch alters urinary heparin-binding epidermal growth factor and antiproliferative factor in patients with interstitial cystitis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this