Sulforaphane absorption and histone deacetylase activity following single dosing of broccoli sprout supplement in normal dogs

Vet Med Sci. 2018 Nov;4(4):357-363. doi: 10.1002/vms3.118. Epub 2018 Aug 17.


The role of epigenetic alterations during cancer has gained increasing attention and has resulted in a paradigm shift in our understanding of mechanisms leading to cancer susceptibility. Sulforaphane (SFN) is a naturally occurring isothiocyanate derived from the precursor glucosinolate, glucoraphanin (GFN), which is found in cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli. Sulforaphane has been shown to suppress tumour growth by several mechanisms including inhibiting histone deacetylases. The objective of this study was to provide a detailed analysis of sulforaphane absorption following a single oral dose of a broccoli sprout supplement in normal dogs. A single dose of broccoli sprout supplement (with active myrosinase) was orally administered to 10 healthy adult dogs. Blood and urine samples were collected prior to dosing, and at various time points post-dosing. Plasma total SFN metabolite levels peaked at 4 h post-consumption and were cleared by 24 h post-consumption. Urinary SFN metabolites peaked at 4 h post-consumption, and remained detectable at 24 and 48 h post-supplement consumption. A trend for decrease in histone deacetylase activity was observed at 1 h post-consumption and a significant decrease was observed at 24 h post-consumption. The data presented herein indicate that oral SFN is absorbed in dogs, SFN metabolites are detectable in plasma and urine post-dosing, and SFN and its metabolites have some effect on histone deacetylase activity following a single dose.

Keywords: dogs; histone deacetylases; neoplasms; vegetables.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brassica / chemistry*
  • Dogs* / blood
  • Dogs* / urine
  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors / metabolism
  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors / pharmacokinetics
  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors / pharmacology
  • Histone Deacetylases / metabolism*
  • Isothiocyanates / metabolism
  • Isothiocyanates / pharmacokinetics*
  • Isothiocyanates / pharmacology
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Sulfoxides


  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors
  • Isothiocyanates
  • Plant Extracts
  • Sulfoxides
  • Histone Deacetylases
  • sulforaphane