We evaluated the anti-tumor activities of the oral administration of fucoidan extracted from Cladosiphon okamuranus using a tumor (colon 26)-bearing mouse model. The materials used included low-molecular-weight fucoidan (LMWF: 6.5-40 kDa), intermediate-molecular-weight fucoidan (IMWF: 110-138 kDa) and high-molecular-weight fucoidan (HMWF: 300-330 kDa). The IMWF group showed significantly suppressed tumor growth. The LMWF and HMWF groups showed significantly increased survival times compared with that observed in the control group (mice fed a fucoidan-free diet). The median survival times in the control, LMWF, IMWF and HMWF groups were 23, 46, 40 and 43 days, respectively. It was also found that oral administration of fucoidan increased the population of natural killer cells in the spleen. Furthermore, from the results of the experiment using Myd-88 knockout mice, it was found that these effects are related to gut immunity. These results suggest that fucoidan is a candidate anti-tumor functional food.
Keywords: Cladosiphon okamuranu; anti-tumor activities; colon-26; fucoidan; functional food; mice.