A multi-mineral natural product inhibits liver tumor formation in C57BL/6 mice

Biol Trace Elem Res. 2012 Jun;147(1-3):267-74. doi: 10.1007/s12011-011-9316-2. Epub 2012 Jan 6.

Abstract

C57BL/6 mice were maintained for up to 18 months on high-fat and low-fat diets with or without a multi-mineral supplement derived from the skeletal remains of the red marine algae Lithothamnion calcareum. Numerous grossly observable liver masses were visible in animals on the "western-style" high-fat diet sacrificed at 12 and 18 months. The majority of the masses were in male mice (20 out of 100 males versus 3 out of 100 females; p = 0.0002). There were more liver masses in animals on the high-fat diet than on the low-fat diet (15 out of 50 on high-fat versus 5 out of 50 on low-fat; p = 0.0254). The multi-mineral supplement reduced the number of liver masses in mice on both diets (3 out of 25 male mice in the low-fat diet group without the supplement versus 1 out of 25 mice with supplement; 12 of 25 male mice in the high-fat diet group without the supplement versus 3 of 25 mice with supplement [p = 0.0129]). Histological evaluation revealed a total of 17 neoplastic lesions (9 adenomas and 8 hepatocellular carcinomas), and 18 pre-neoplastic lesions. Out of eight hepatocellular carcinomas, seven were found in unsupplemented diet groups. Steatosis was widely observed in livers with and without grossly observable masses, but the multi-mineral supplement had no effect on the incidence of steatosis or its severity. Taken together, these findings suggest that a multi-mineral-rich natural product can protect mice against neoplastic and pre-neoplastic proliferative liver lesions that may develop in the face of steatosis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenoma / etiology
  • Adenoma / prevention & control
  • Animals
  • Biological Products / administration & dosage
  • Biological Products / pharmacology*
  • Calcium / metabolism
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular / etiology
  • Carcinoma, Hepatocellular / prevention & control
  • Cytokines / metabolism
  • Diet, Fat-Restricted
  • Diet, High-Fat / adverse effects
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Fatty Liver / etiology
  • Fatty Liver / prevention & control
  • Female
  • Liver / drug effects*
  • Liver / metabolism
  • Liver / pathology
  • Liver Neoplasms / etiology
  • Liver Neoplasms / prevention & control*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Minerals / administration & dosage
  • Minerals / pharmacology
  • Rhodophyta / chemistry*
  • Sex Factors

Substances

  • Biological Products
  • Cytokines
  • Minerals
  • Calcium