Recombinant human endostatin endostar suppresses angiogenesis and lymphangiogenesis of malignant pleural effusion in mice

PLoS One. 2012;7(12):e53449. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0053449. Epub 2012 Dec 28.


Background: Malignant pleural effusion (MPE) is a common complication of lung cancer. One widely used treatment for MPE is Endostar, a recombined humanized endostatin based treatment. However, the mechanism of this treatment is still unclear. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of Endostar in mice with MPE.

Methods and materials: Lewis lung carcinoma (LLC) cell line expressing enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) was injected into pleural cavity to establish MPE mice model. Mice were randomly divided into four groups. High dose of Endostar (30 mg/kg), low dose of Endostar (8 mg/kg), normal saline, or Bevacizumab (5 mg/kg) was respectively injected into pleural cavity three times with 3-day interval in each group. Transverse computed tomography (CT) was performed to observe pleural fluid formation 14 days after LLC cells injection. Mice were anesthetized and sacrificed 3 days after final administration. The volume of pleural effusion n was measured using 1 ml syringe. Micro blood vessel density (MVD), Lymphatic micro vessel density (LMVD), the expression level of vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGF-A) and VEGF-C were observed by immunohistochemistry (IHC) staining.

Results: The volume of pleural effusion as well as the number of pleural tumor foci, MVD and the expression of VEGF-A were significantly reduced in high dose of Endostar treat group. More importantly, LMVD and the expression of VEGF-C were markedly lower in treat group than those in the other three control groups.

Conclusion: Our work demonstrated that Endostar played an efficient anti-cancer role in MPE through its suppressive effect on angiogenesis and lymphangiogenesis, which provided a certain theoretical basis for the effectiveness of Endostar on the MPE treatment.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Carcinoma, Lewis Lung / complications
  • Carcinoma, Lewis Lung / drug therapy*
  • Carcinoma, Lewis Lung / pathology
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Down-Regulation / drug effects
  • Drug Evaluation, Preclinical
  • Endostatins / pharmacology*
  • Endostatins / therapeutic use
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins / genetics
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins / metabolism
  • Lymphangiogenesis / drug effects*
  • Lymphangiogenesis / physiology
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mice, Nude
  • Neoplasm Transplantation
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / etiology
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / prevention & control*
  • Pleural Effusion, Malignant / complications
  • Pleural Effusion, Malignant / drug therapy*
  • Pleural Effusion, Malignant / pathology
  • Recombinant Proteins / pharmacology*
  • Recombinant Proteins / therapeutic use


  • Endostatins
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • enhanced green fluorescent protein
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins
  • endostar protein

Grant support

This research was supported by the Natural Science Fund of Jiangsu Province (BK2011658) to Song Yong. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.