"The study by Zhang and colleagues has uncovered a previously unrecognized anti-cancer effect of omega-3 fatty acids, which are an important lipid component of diets that have been developed to prevent heart disease and cancer," said Jonathan R. Lindner, professor of medicine at Oregon Health & Sciences University.
"The authors have demonstrated that metabolites of these lipids can act to suppress the growth of new blood vessels that are necessary to feed tumor growth," added Lindner, who was not involved in the study. "By shutting off a tumor's blood supply, these compounds can act to dramatically slow tumor growth and prevent spread. The results from this study suggest that new drug strategies for fighting cancer could emerge from knowledge of how the body uses nutrition to promote health."
The EDPs are broken down in the body by inhibiting the enzyme soluble epoxide hydrolase (sHI). In previous research, Hammock's lab showed that inhibitors of the sEHI enzyme help to normalize physiological activity. In the current study, UC Davis researchers determined that the addition of sEHI stabilized EDP in circulating blood thereby producing EDPs' anti-tumor effects. The anti-cancer drugs sorafenib and regorafenib are FDA-approved sEHIs.
"It may be possible to improve the efficacy of these anti-cancer drugs by combining them with a diet high in omega-3 and low in omega-6 fatty acids," Hammock said.
The researchers also found that a metabolite of arachidonic acid (ARA), an omega-6 fatty acid, has the opposite effect of EDP. The ARA metabolite, epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EETs), slightly increases angiogenesis and tumor progression in mice.
"There is no free lunch," said Katherine W. Ferrara, professor in the UC Davis Department of Biomedical Engineering. "The EETs encourage
|Contact: Dorsey Griffith|
University of California - Davis Health System