Angiogenesis serves a crucial role in tumor growth. Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is a potent regulator of tumor angiogenesis and is highly expressed in oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC). Bevacizumab, which binds to VEGF-A, inhibits the biological activity of VEGF and is clinically administered by intravenous injection. As intravenous chemotherapy intensifies the side effects experienced by OSCC patients, an alternative treatment option is desirable, particularly for older patients with OSCC who present with systemic disease complications. Generally, local injections of antitumor agents enhance tumoricidal activity and decrease side effects. However, the antitumor effects of peritumoral bevacizumab injections in OSCC are not fully understood. Therefore, the present study examined the effects of peritumoral bevacizumab injections in an experimental nude mouse model of OSCC through immunohistochemical staining for cluster of differentiation (CD)31 and α-smooth muscle actin (α‑SMA) and apoptosis assays. It was identified that peritumoral injections of bevacizumab significantly inhibited tumor growth in OSCC xenografts compared with peritumoral saline injections or no treatment (controls), and it was also revealed that treatment with bevacizumab significantly reduced CD31- and α-SMA-positive microvessel density (P<0.01) and increased level of tumor cell apoptosis (P<0.01) compared with the controls. In conclusion, these results collectively support the experimental basis for the clinical development of peritumoral bevacizumab injections for the treatment of OSCC.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cancer Research