Fish Oil Blocks Azoxymethane-Induced Rat Colon Tumorigenesis by Increasing Cell Differentiation and Apoptosis Rather Than Decreasing Cell Proliferation Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • The purpose of this study was to determine whether the protective effect of fish oil against colon carcinogenesis is due to decreased proliferation, increased differentiation and/or increased apoptosis. Male Sprague Dawley rats (n = 260) were fed one of two oils (corn or fish) and two fibers (pectin or cellulose), plus or minus the carcinogen azoxymethane (AOM). Rats were killed at wk 18 (n = 80) or 36 (n = 180) for cytokinetic measurements. In vivo cell proliferation was measured by incorporation of bromodeoxyuridine into DNA, differentiation by binding of Dolichos biflorus agglutinin and apoptosis by immunoperoxidase detection of digoxigenin labeled genomic DNA. Fish oil resulted in a lower adenocarcinoma incidence (56.1 vs. 70.3%) compared with corn oil. There was no effect of fat or fiber on number of proliferative cells/crypt column in either the proximal or distal colon. In contrast, fish oil resulted in a greater degree of differentiation compared with corn oil in both colonic sites. In addition, fish oil resulted in a higher number of apoptotic cells/crypt column in both the proximal and distal colon as compared with corn oil. AOM treatment increased the ratio of proliferative cells/crypt column to apoptotic cells/crypt column in both the proximal and distal colon compared with saline controls. Fish oil, however, resulted in a lower ratio in both sites in the colon as compared with corn oil. These results suggest that an increase in apoptosis and differentiation, rather than a decrease in proliferation, accounts for the protective effect of fish oil against experimentally induced colon tumorigenesis.

author list (cited authors)

  • Chang, W., Chapkin, R. S., & Lupton, J. R.

citation count

  • 139

publication date

  • October 1998