Abnormal flow cytometry profiles in patients with interstitial cystitis

W. Bushman*, C. Goolsby, J. T. Grayhack, A. J. Schaeffer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Flow cytometry was performed on bladder cells from patients with interstitial cystitis and control patients. Cells were processed in standard fashion for flow cytometry with propidium iodide staining and analysis was restricted to samples with sufficient cells for cytokeratin gating and acceptable coefficients of variation. Of 14 interstitial cystitis patients 4 (29%) demonstrated aneuploid deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) profiles as evidenced by a discrete peak with a DNA index of 1.2 or greater in the cytokeratin positive population. The aneuploid peak accounted for up to 54% of the cytokeratin positive population in these samples. No such aneuploid DNA profiles were evident in specimens obtained from control patients. A significant DNA tetraploid population, as evidenced by a 4C (G2) peak greater than 20%, was observed in 6 of 14 interstitial cystitis patients (43%) and 8 of 11 controls (72%). Manual counting of the per cent of binucleated cytokeratin positive cells in the cytokeratin stained population and nuclear preparations of several samples for flow analysis indicate that apparent DNA tetraploidy in the interstitial cystitis and control patients is due to an abundance of binucleated cells. Aneuploid DNA profiles on barbotage specimens from interstitial cystitis patients may reflect a real karyotypic abnormality or altered chromosome complement (true aneuploidy), abnormal chromatin structure or abnormal cytoplasmic binding of the propidium iodide stain. This finding may signal an underlying abnormality of the epithelial cell population in some patients with the clinical diagnosis of interstitial cystitis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2262-2266
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Urology
Issue number6 II
StatePublished - 1994


  • DNA aneuploidy
  • cystitis
  • flow cytometry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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