Increased urine and serum nerve growth factor levels in interstitial cystitis suggest chronic inflammation is involved in the pathogenesis of disease - Abstract

OBJECTIVE: Interstitial cystitis/bladder pain syndrome (IC/BPS) is considered a bladder disorder due to localized chronic inflammation.

This study investigated the nerve growth factor (NGF) levels in serum and urine in patients with IC/BPS.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Thirty patients with IC/BPS and 28 normal subjects without lower urinary tract symptoms were recruited from an outpatient clinic. IC/BPS was diagnosed by frequency, bladder pain, and the presence of glomerulations during cystoscopic hydrodistention. Serum and urine were collected before any treatment was given. Serum NGF and urinary NGF/Cr levels were compared between IC/BPS and the controls.

RESULTS: Urinary NGF levels were significantly higher in patients with IC/PBS (26.3±11.2 pg/ml) than in controls (1.40±0.63 pg) (p = 0.014). After normalization, the urinary NGF/Cr levels were significantly greater in IC/BPS (0.69±0.38 pg/mg) than controls (0.20±0.01, p = 0.011). Relative to the levels in control subjects (1.90±0.38 pg/mL), the mean serum NGF levels were higher in patients IC/BPS patients (3.48±0.55 pg/mL) (p = 0.015). No significant correlation was found between the serum and urinary NGF levels in IC/BPS patients. However, the clinical characteristics and medical co-morbidities did not show significant difference between IC/BPS patients with a higher and lower serum NGF level.

CONCLUSIONS: Increased urinary NGF levels in IC/BPS patients suggest that chronic inflammation is involved in this bladder disorder. Increased circulating serum NGF levels were noted in over half of patients with IC/BPS, however, the urinary and serum NGF were not inter-correlated and elevated serum NGF did not relate with clinical features.

Written by:
Liu HT, Kuo HC.   Are you the author?
Department of Urology, Buddhist Tzu Chi General Hospital and Tzu Chi University, Hualin, Taiwan; Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Tzu Chi University, Hualien, Taiwan.

Reference: PLoS One. 2012;7(9):e44687.
doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0044687


PubMed Abstract
PMID: 23028581

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