Journal Article

Dietary fish oil inhibits the expression of farnesyl protein transferase and colon tumor development in rodents.

J Singh, R Hamid and B S Reddy

in Carcinogenesis

Volume 19, issue 6, pages 985-989
Published in print June 1998 | ISSN: 0143-3334
Published online June 1998 | e-ISSN: 1460-2180 | DOI:
Dietary fish oil inhibits the expression of farnesyl protein transferase and colon tumor development in rodents.

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Although epidemiological and experimental studies indicate a strong relationship between different dietary fats and risk of colon cancer, the modulating effects of these nutritional factors at the molecular level are not fully elucidated. Activated ras genes have been implicated in the etiology of many human malignancies, including colon cancer. It is well established that the transforming ability of ras-p21 depends on its correct localization in plasma membrane. We have previously demonstrated that ingestion of a relatively higher amount of dietary fish oil leads to reduced plasma membrane levels of ras-p21 with concomitant increase in its cytoplasmic contents during the promotion and progression phases of chemically-induced colon tumorigenesis. In this follow-up experiment, we have found that intake of a high amount of corn oil, one of the most widely used fats in the American diet, enhances the expression of farnesyl protein transferase (FPTase). This enzyme catalyses farnesylation of ras precursors in a critical step during post-translational modification of ras oncoproteins, thereby enabling their anchorage to plasma membrane. In contrast, consumption of high amounts of fish oil, which is rich in omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, reduces the levels of FPTase expression, thus inhibiting post-translational processing of ras precursors resulting in decreased ras function both in colonic mucosa as well as in colon tumors. These results correlate with increased incidence and multiplicity of grossly visibly colon tumors in carcinogen-treated animals fed a high corn oil diet versus decreased incidence and multiplicity of colon tumors in their counterparts fed the high fish oil diet. This dietary inhibition of FPTase may have a practical chemopreventive potential.

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Clinical Cytogenetics and Molecular Genetics

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