Global histone H4K20 trimethylation predicts cancer-specific survival in patients with muscle-invasive bladder cancer

BJU Int. 2011 Oct;108(8 Pt 2):E290-6. doi: 10.1111/j.1464-410X.2011.10203.x. Epub 2011 May 31.


Objective: •To determine the role of global histone methylation as a prognostic parameter in patients with bladder cancer.

Patients and methods: •We used a tissue microarray with samples from patients with non-muscle-invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC; n= 161), muscle-invasive bladder cancer (MIBC, n= 127), normal urothelium (NU; n= 31) and bladder cancer metastases (METS; n= 31) to determine global histone methylation (me) levels at histone H3 lysine 4 (H3K4) and H4K20.

Results: •Global histone modification levels (H3K4me1, H3K4me3, H4K20me1, H4K20me2, and H4K20me3) were lower in bladder cancer samples than in NU tissue •Global levels of H3K4me1, H4K20me1, H4K20me2 and H4K20me3 were decreasing from NU over NMIBC and MIBC to METS. •H4K20me1 levels were increased in patients with NMIBC with advanced pTstage and less differentiated bladder cancer. •In patients with MIBC, pTstage was negatively correlated with H3K4me1, H4K20me1 and H4K20me2 levels. •H4K20me3 levels were significantly correlated in a univariate and multivariate model with bladder cancer-specific mortality after radical cystectomy in patients with MIBC.

Conclusion: •Global histone methylation levels may help to identify patients with bladder cancer with poor prognosis after radical cystectomy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Female
  • Histones / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Methylation
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Prognosis
  • Survival Rate
  • Urinary Bladder Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Urinary Bladder Neoplasms / mortality*
  • Urinary Bladder Neoplasms / pathology


  • Histones