• Leiomyoma;
  • endometrium;
  • cytokine;
  • angiogenesis;
  • abnormal uterine bleeding

PROBLEM: Abnormal uterine bleeding is a significant health problem for many women and is the number-one reason for performing hysterectomy in the United States. Leiomyomas (uterine fibroids) are benign neoplams that are a frequent cause of abnormal uterine bleeding. The goal of this study was to assess the effects of the anti-angiogenic cytokine, interferon (INF)-α, on the proliferation of both leiomyoma and normal uterine cells.

METHOD OF STUDY: Primary cultures of leiomyoma, myometrial, and endometrial stromal cells were established for in vitro study. The effects of INF-α (10, 100, and 1000 U/ml) were tested on serum-stimulated and basic fibroblast growth factor-stimulated cell proliferation using the [3H]thymidine incorporation assay.

RESULTS: INF-α was a potent inhibitor of cell proliferation for all three cell types, with endometrial stromal cells showing the greatest sensitivity. The antiproliferative effect did not appear to result from toxic effects on the cells.

CONCLUSION: INFs may prove to be useful therapeutic agents for the treatment of leiomyoma-related abnormal uterine bleeding.