Background: Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), a naturally occurring compound found in ruminants products, has been shown to possess anticancer properties in vivo and in vitro. There are several CLA isomers in ruminant-produced foods, among which t10, c12-CLA and c9, t11-CLA are the most potent. Protein tyrosine phosphatase gamma (PTPgamma) has been implicated as a tumor suppressor gene in kidney and lung cancers. Our previous results indicated that estradiol-17beta (E2)-induced suppression of PTPgamma may play a role in mammary tumorigenesis.
Materials and methods: The effects of t10, c12-CLA and c9, t11-CLA on PTPgamma mRNA expression in human breast epithelial cells and stromal cells, isolated from surgical specimens of mammoplasty and breast cancer patients, were detected and quantified by RT-PCR RESULTS: The PTPgamma mRNA expression was lower in cancer than in normal breast cells. Both t10, c12-CLA and c9, t11-CLA significantly (p < 0.05) increased the PTPgamma mRNA levels in primary cultured normal breast epithelial cells, normal breast stromal cells and breast cancer epithelial cells, but not in breast cancer stromal cells. t10, c12-CLA appeared to be the most active isomer in estrogen receptor a (ERalpha)-positive human breast cancer epithelial cells.
Conclusion: The results indicate that dietary CLA might serve as a chemo-preventive and chemo-therapeutic agent in human breast cancers by up-regulating the estrogen-regulated tumor suppressor gene, PTPgamma expression.