Purpose: Cisplatin (CDDP) is frequently used in combination chemotherapy with paclitaxel for treating urothelial carcinoma of the urinary bladder (UCUB). CDDP cross-resistance has been suggested to develop with paclitaxel, thus hindering successful UCUB treatment. Therefore, elucidating the mechanisms underlying CDDP-induced anticancer drug resistance is imperative and may provide an insight in developing novel therapeutic strategy. Experimental Design: Loss-of-function assays were performed to elucidate the role of the EGFR and STAT3 in CDDP-induced CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein delta (CEBPD) expression in UCUB cells. Reporter and in vivo DNA-binding assays were employed to determine whether CEBPD directly regulates ATP binding cassette subfamily B member 1 (ABCB1) and ATP binding cassette subfamily C member 2 (ABCC2) activation. Finally, a xenograft animal assay was used to examine the abilities of gefitinib and S3I-201 (a STAT3 inhibitor) to reverse CDDP and paclitaxel sensitivity. Results: CEBPD expression was maintained in postoperative chemotherapy patients, and this expression was induced by CDDP even in CDDP-resistant UCUB cells. Upon CDDP treatment, CEBPD activated ABCB1 and ABCC2. Furthermore, the EGFR/STAT3 pathway contributed to CDDP-induced CEBPD expression in UCUB cells. Gefitinib and S3I-201 treatment significantly reduced the expression of CEBPD and enhanced the sensitivity of CDDP-resistant UCUB cells to CDDP and paclitaxel. Conclusions: Our results revealed the risk of CEBPD activation in CDDP-resistant UCUB cells and suggested a therapeutic strategy for patients with UCUB or UCUB resisted to CDDP and paclitaxel by combination with either gefitinib or S3I-201.
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