Mechanism of anti-tumor effect of combination of bleomycin and shock waves

Masanori Kato, Naomasa Ioritani, Takashi Suzuki, Mariko Kambe, Yasuo Inaba, Ryuji Watanabe, Hironobu Sasano, Seiichi Orikasa

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24 Citations (Scopus)


We have previously reported marked enhancement of the cytocidal effect of bleomycin (BLM) on cancer cell suspensions in vitro by the combination with shock waves. In this study, we evaluated the synergistic effects on cancer cell proliferation and apoptosis in solid tumors. A spherical piezo-ceramic element was used as the shock wave source, with a pressure peak of 40 MPa. A human colon cancer cell line, SW480 was implanted onto the back of nude mice. Two thousand shock waves were administered to the tumor immediately following an intravenous injection of BLM at a dose of one-tenth of the LD50. The tumor was extirpated at 3, 6, 12, 24, 72 h and 1 week following shock exposure. Cell proliferation and apoptosis were detected by Ki-67 using antibody MIB-1 and by the terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase (TdT)-mediated dUTP-biotin nick-end labeling (TUNEL) method. The lowest percentage (35.7%) of Ki-67-positive cells appeared 24 h following the treatment. The maximum apoptotic index was detected within 6 h following the treatment. Moreover, numerous large cells with enlarged nuclei were detected histologically. These results suggest that shock waves may enhance chemotherapeutic effects by increasing apoptosis and decreasing cell proliferation in the tumor tissue.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1065-1072
Number of pages8
JournalJapanese Journal of Cancer Research
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2000


  • Bleomycin
  • Mitotic death
  • SW480
  • Shock wave


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