N-acetylcysteine prevents bladder tissue fibrosis in a lipopolysaccharide-induced cystitis rat model.
Sci Rep. 2019 May 31 ;9(1):8134. Epub 2019 May 31. PMID: 31148586
Therapeutic options for non-Hunner type interstitial cystitis (IC), which is histologically characterized by fibrosis and mast cell infiltration, are limited. We developed a rat model that replicates chronic inflammation and fibrosis and evaluated the therapeutic effect of N-acetylcysteine (NAC), a well-known anti-fibrotic agent, on the model. Intravesical instillation of lipopolysaccharide (LPS, 750μg) after protamine sulfate (10 mg) was conducted twice per week for five consecutive weeks. One week after final instillation, 200 mg/kg NAC (n = 10, IC + NAC group) or phosphate-buffered saline (n = 10, IC group) was daily injected intraperitoneally once daily for 5 days. LPS instillation induced bladder fibrosis, mast cell infiltration, and apoptotic tissue damage. Functionally, LPS insult led to irregular micturition, decreased inter-contraction intervals, and decreased micturition volume. NAC significantly improved most of the voiding parameters and reversed histologicaldamages including fibrosis. NAC inhibited the induction and nuclear localization of phospho-Smad2 protein in bladder tissues and the upregulation of genes related to fibrosis, such as Tgfb2, Tgfb3, Smad2, Smad3, Cxcl10, and Card10. This is the first study to demonstrate the beneficial effects on NACin restoring voiding function, relieving tissue fibrosis and related bladder injuries, in the LPS-induced cystitis rat model.