Lung cancer-related pleural fluid (LCPF) presents as a common complication with limited treatment. Beyond its function in lipid digestion, bile acid was identified as a potent carcinogen to stimulate tumor proliferation. Previous research indicated a correlation between serum bile acid levels and the risk of developing several gastrointestinal cancers. Our study identified elevated bile acid levels in LCPF and increased farnesoid X receptor (FXR) expression as bile acid nuclear receptors in pleural microvessels of lung adenocarcinoma. Additionally, LCPF stimulated the expression of proteins involved in bile acid synthesis and cholesterol metabolism in HUVECs including CYP7A1, StAR, HMGCR, and SREBP2. LCPF-induced endothelial motility and angiogenesis were counteracted by using β-muricholic acid as an FXR antagonist. Moreover, we investigated the efficacy of cholesterol-lowering medications, such as cholestyramine, fenofibrate, and atorvastatin, in regulating LCPF-regulated angiogenesis. Along with suppressing endothelial proliferation and angiogenesis, atorvastatin treatment reversed cholesterol accumulation and endothelial junction disruption caused by LCPF. Statin treatment inhibited LCPF-induced endothelial FXR expression as well as the downstream proteins RXR and SHP. Based on the positive findings of suppressing endothelial angiogenesis, our group further incorporated the effect of statin on clinical patients complicated with LCPF. A Kaplan–Meier analysis revealed the clinical benefit of statin exposure in patients with lung adenocarcinoma with LCPF. Conclusively, our study demonstrated the ability of statin to alleviate LCPF-induced angiogenesis in patients with LCPF via FXR modulation.
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