Research Papers:

Inhibiting bladder tumor growth with a cell penetrating R11 peptide derived from the p53 C-terminus

Tingting Zhang _, Kaijie Wu, Chen Ding, Kangwei Sun, Zhenfeng Guan, Xinyang Wang, Jer-Tsong Hsieh, Dalin He and Jinhai Fan

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Oncotarget. 2015; 6:37782-37791. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.5622

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Tingting Zhang1,*, Kaijie Wu1,*, Chen Ding2,*, Kangwei Sun1, Zhenfeng Guan1, Xinyang Wang1, Jer-Tsong Hsieh3, Dalin He1, Jinhai Fan1

1Department of Urology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an, Shaanxi Province, China

2Department of Urology, Xiangyang Central Hospital, Hubei University of Arts and Science, Xiangyang, Hubei Province, China

3Department of Urology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX, USA

*These authors have contributed equally to this work

Correspondence to:

Jinhai Fan, e-mail: [email protected]

Keywords: bladder cancer, cell penetrating peptide, p53 C-terminus, targeted therapy, metastatic tumor

Received: April 20, 2015     Accepted: September 28, 2015     Published: October 08, 2015


Urothelial carcinoma of the bladder (UCB) is the most common malignancy of the urinary tract, nearly half of which contains a mutation in TP53 gene. Hence, therapeutic approach by restoring functional p53 protein in cancer cells will be beneficial. Recent studies have demonstrated the inhibition of cancer cell growth by p53 reactivation using a peptide derived from the p53 C-terminus (p53C). However, the outcome of reactivating p53 in controlling bladder cancer development is limited by its efficiency and specificity of peptide delivery, especially in metastatic animal models. Herein, we report that the cell penetrating peptide (polyarginine, R11)-conjugated p53C can exhibit a preferential uptake and growth inhibit of UCB cells expressing either mutant or wild-type TP53 by the activation of p53-dependent pathway. R11-p53C peptide treatment of preclinical orthotopic and metastatic bladder cancer models significantly decreased the tumor burden and increased the lifespan without a significant cytotoxicity. Based on these results, we believe that R11-p53C peptide has therapeutic potential for primary and metastatic bladder cancer, and R11-mediated transduction may be a useful strategy for the therapeutic delivery of large tumor suppressor molecules to tumor cells in vitro and in vivo.

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