Effect of hyperthermia on liver cell lines: important findings for thermal therapy in hepatocellular carcinoma. Academic Article uri icon

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  • BACKGROUND: Hepatocellular carcinoma is the fifth most common malignant tumour, with a high mortality rate. This study aimed to investigate the effect of hyperthermia on HepG2 and LX-1 cell lines to gain more information on thermal treatment of liver tumours. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The cell lines HepG2, LX-1 and their co-cultures were heated from 55°C to 85°C for different time spans. After heat exposure, metabolic activity was measured immediately, and after 24 h and 48 h using the 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-5-(3-carboxymethoxyphenyl)-2-(4-sulfophenyl)-2H-tetrazolium) (MTS) test to assess how many cells had survived heating. RESULTS: Our results show highly significant differences between the temperature tolerance of HepG2 and LX-1 cells. Alone, HepG2 cells are most sensitive to heat-induced cell death, their sensitivity decreased with rising percentages of LX-1 cells in the co-culture. CONCLUSION: Our results suggest that the outcome of thermal cancer therapy is dependent on the temperature and the grade of fibrosis in the treated livers.


  • Mayrhauser, Ursula
  • Stiegler, Philipp
  • Stadlbauer, Vanessa
  • Koestenbauer, Sonja
  • Leber, Brian
  • Konrad, Katja
  • Iberer, Florian
  • Portugaller, Rupert Horst
  • Tscheliessnigg, Karlheinz

publication date

  • May 2011