Omega-3 and omega-3/curcumin-enriched fruit juices decrease tumour growth and improve muscle wasting in tumour-bearing mice

Silvia Busquets, Enrica Marmonti, Francesc Oliva, Estefanía Simoes, Daniel Luna, Janne Sand Mathisen, Francisco J López-Soriano, Maria Öhlander, Josep M Argilés


Background: The aim of the present investigation was to evaluate the effects of the administration of a juice containing essential nutrients (marine omega-3 fatty acids: EPA and DHA, a polyphenolrich juice, vitamin D3, essential amino acids and dietary fibre) (CAX) and a juice also enriched with curcumin (CUR), alone or in combination with a chemotherapeutic agent (sorafenib) in a mouse cancer cachexia model.

Methods: Administration of CAX and CUR in the form of jellified pellets to mice bearing the Lewis lung carcinoma.

Results: Administration of CAX and CUR in the form of jellified pellets to mice bearing the Lewis lung carcinoma resulted in a 12 and 18% reduction in tumour weight, respectively, but no additive effect in combination with sorafenib was seen. No effects on metastases measurements were observed. In spite of the reduction of the primary tumour, the chemotherapy treatment alone did not result in any changes in body weight. Conversely, in combination with sorafenib, both juices had an important effect on body weight loss. CUR also had an effect without chemotherapy. Concerning muscle weight, tibialis muscle mass was increased as a result of CAX and CUR treatment. Sorafenib-treated mice had a tendency towards larger tibialis muscles, this tendency being clearly significant when CAX was administered in combination with chemotherapy. In sorafenib-treated mice, juice treatment --either CAX or CUR-- resulted in a tendency to an increase in grip force.

Conclusions: It is concluded that administration of omega-3/protein and omega-3/protein/curcumin-enriched fruit juices may have beneficial effects on muscle wasting and could be part of a multi-modal therapy for cancer cachexia.

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