Magnetic Resonance Imaging Assessment of Carcinogen-induced Murine Bladder Tumors

Alexander P. Glaser, Daniele Procissi, Yanni Yu, Joshua J. Meeks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Murine bladder tumor models are critical for the evaluation of new therapeutic options. Bladder tumors induced with the N-butyl-N-(4-hydroxybutyl) nitrosamine (BBN) carcinogen are advantageous over cell line-based models because they closely replicate the genomic profiles of human tumors, and, unlike cell models and xenografts, they provide a good opportunity for the study of immunotherapies. However, bladder tumor generation is heterogeneous; therefore, an accurate assessment of tumor burden is needed before randomization to experimental treatment. Described here is a BBN mouse model and protocol to evaluate bladder cancer tumor burden in vivo using a fast and reliable magnetic resonance (MR) sequence (true FISP). This method is simple and reliable because, unlike ultrasound, MR is operator-independent and allows for the straightforward post-acquisition image processing and review. Using axial images of the bladder, analysis of regions of interest along the bladder wall and tumor allow for the calculation of bladder wall and tumor area. This measurement correlates with ex vivo bladder weight (rs= 0.37, p = 0.009) and tumor stage (p = 0.0003). In conclusion, BBN generates heterogeneous tumors that are ideal for evaluation of immunotherapies, and MRI can quickly and reliably assess tumor burden prior to randomization to experimental treatment arms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of visualized experiments : JoVE
Issue number145
StatePublished - Mar 29 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)


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