Round window membrane delivery of L-methionine provides protection from cisplatin ototoxicity without compromising chemotherapeutic efficacy

Geming Li, Dorothy A. Frenz, Sapna Brahmblatt, Joseph G. Feghali, Diana J. Ruben, Diana Berggren, Joseph Arezzo, Thomas R. Van De Water

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

96 Scopus citations


Cisplatin (cis-diamminedichloroplatinum(II) (CDDP)) is a widely used, highly effective, oncolytic agent that has serious ototoxic side-effects. To test the effectiveness of local delivery of L-methionine (L-Met) as an otoprotective agent against CDDP ototoxicity, we used a rat model of a highly metastatic breast cancer tumor, i.e. Fisher 344 rats implanted with MTLn3 breast cancer cells. Four experimental groups were evaluated - I: untreated; II: CDDP-treated (three dosages): III: systemically-delivered L-Met + CDDP-treated; IV: locally delivered L-Met + CDDP-treated. The integrity of the outer hair cells (OHCs) was determined using scanning electron microscopy (SEM); hearing was assessed by recording auditory brainstem responses (ABRs) at multiple frequencies. The chemotherapeutic effectiveness of CDDP was quantified by measuring changes in tumor mass and the presence of tumor metastasis. L-Met provided otoprotection of the OHCs against CDDP toxicity in the cochleae of rats following either systemic (III) or local (IV) administration. The ABRs were unchanged in each of the L-Met protection Groups (III and IV) and in the untreated animals of Group I. Treatment with CDDP only (II) induced significant hearing losses at both 16 and 18 kHz when compared to ABRs of untreated rats(I). CDDP was effective in controlling the MTLn3 initiated breast cancer tumors in the CDDP-treated (II) and the local L-Met protection, CDDP-treated (IV) Groups. In contrast, the tumors in the systemic L-Met protection, CDDP-treated Group (III) were not controlled by the CDDP treatment regime. This study demonstrates that local delivery of L-Met to the scala tympani of the cochlea via the round window membrane (IV) provides effective protection against CDDP ototoxicity without compromising its ability to control a highly metastatic form of cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number10
Pages (from-to)163-176
Number of pages14
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • Chemotherapeutic efficacy
  • Cisplatin ototoxicity
  • Otoprotection
  • Round window membrane delivery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Toxicology


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