Effect of separate conjugated linoleic acid isomers on murine mammary tumorigenesis

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Recent studies have linked conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) to altered tumorigenesis of several sites. We showed recently that a mixture of CLA isomers was able to significantly decrease mammary tumor metastasis in mice. That effect was seen with as little as 0.1% CLA in the diet. Other studies with dietary CLA have shown that various isomers may have differential effects. The purpose of this work was to assess which individual CLA isomers had similar effects in alteration of mouse mammary tumor metastasis. For that, we fed six 20% (w/w) total fat diets which contained either no CLA, low (0.1%, w/w) or high (0.25%, w/w) levels of cis9,trans11-CLA (c9,t11), trans10,cis12-CLA (t10,c12) or a mixture of the 2 isomers (0.125% of each, w/w) as free fatty acids. Neither the separate isomers nor the mixture had an effect on the latency or growth of primary line 4526 tumors when compared to the group without CLA. However, all diets containing CLA significantly decreased the total tumor burden (volume of tumor, mm3) in lungs of mice from both spontaneous metastasis (reduced by 42-73%) as well as implantation and survival of the metastatic cell (reduced by 46-61%) when compared with diets containing no CLA. Diets containing a greater concentration of either c9,t11 or t10,c12 had a significantly greater effect compared to the lower concentrations of the respective isomers when metastatic nodule size and total tumor burden were assessed. The diet containing both isomers decreased total tumor burden similarly to the diets containing the lower concentration of each of the isomers. Thus, the effects of c9,t11 and t10,c12 may not be additive and possibly share similar mechanisms for decreasing metastatic tumor burden in mice transplanted with mammary tumor cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)13-19
Number of pages7
JournalCancer Letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 10 2003


  • Conjugated linoleic acid
  • Mammary tumorigenesis
  • Metastasis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Molecular Biology
  • Oncology


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