Growth and stretch response of human exstrophy bladder smooth muscle cells: Molecular evidence of normal intrinsic function

Anna Orsola, Carlos R. Estrada, Hiep T. Nguyen, Alan B. Retik, Michael R. Freeman, Craig A Peters, Rosalyn M. Adam

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: To establish primary cultures of smooth muscle cells (SMC) from human exstrophic bladders (E-SMC), and determine their in vitro growth dynamics and responses to mechanical stretch. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Primary cultures of E-SMC from three patients were established from exstrophic bladder tissue using an explant method. Growth dynamics were assessed using tetrazolium-dye uptake. The DNA synthesis rate in response to cyclic stretch-relaxation was determined with thymidine-incorporation assays. Expression of the SMC mitogen heparin-binding epidermal growth factor-like growth factor (HB-EGF) mRNA in response to mechanical stretch was determined using semiquantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. RESULTS: The approximate doubling time of the E-SMC grown in the presence of serum was 4 days, consistent with growth rates of SMC reported previously. E-SMC exposed to stretch had greater DNA synthesis, albeit to a lesser extent than previously seen with non-exstrophic SMC. The expression of HB-EGF was also increased in cells exposed to mechanical stimuli, consistent with our previous finding of stretch-regulated HB-EGF gene expression in bladder SMC. CONCLUSIONS: E-SMC had growth characteristics similar to those previously reported in non-exstrophic cells. E-SMC also had stretch-induced expression of HB-EGF mRNA. These observations provide evidence that despite development in an abnormal defunctionalized state, E-SMC retain the potential for normal growth, and may modulate this response through mechanisms similar to those operating in normal bladder SMC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)144-148
Number of pages5
JournalBJU international
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2005


  • Bladder exstrophy
  • HB-EGF
  • Primary culture
  • Smooth muscle
  • Stretch

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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