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Intravesical chemotherapy: Combination with dimethyl sulfoxide does not enhance cytotoxicity in vitro

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There is evidence that dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) can increase the anticancer activity of chemotherapeutic drugs. As DMSO is instilled into the bladder for interstitial cystitis, it could be readily adopted in clinical practice if it was found to enhance the effectiveness of the drugs used for intravesical chemotherapy. The purpose of this study was to investigate, using a human bladder cancer cell line, the hypothesis that DMSO enhances the activity of these agents. However, the addition of 4% DMSO to the four drugs most frequently used for intravesical chemotherapy (adriamycin, epodyl, mitomicin-c, thiotepa) did not increase tumour cell kill in vitro.

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Walker, L., Walker, M.C., Parris, C.N. et al. Intravesical chemotherapy: Combination with dimethyl sulfoxide does not enhance cytotoxicity in vitro. Urol. Res. 16, 329–331 (1988). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00263647

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Key words

  • Cytotoxic drugs
  • Dimethyl sulfoxide
  • Intravesical chemotherapy
  • Transitional cell carcinoma