Nutrition and Cancer 2004;48(1):64-9
Natural alkylglycerols restrain growth and metastasis of grafted tumors in mice
Frederique Pedrono, Bénédicte Martin, Christine Leduc, Jacky Le Lan, Bernard Saïag, Philippe Legrand, Jacques-Philippe Moulinoux, Alain B Legrand
Alkylglycerols are natural etherlipids abundant in shark liver oil (SLO) in a diacylated form. SLO is known to have antitumor properties and was recently described as an inhibitor of tumor neovascularization. However, most studies did not discriminate between the respective activities of alkylglycerols and of fatty acids, which both have potent biological properties. In this work, a mouse model was used to investigate the antitumor effects of SLO and of alkylglycerols purified from the same source, both administered orally. We demonstrated that either pure alkylglycerols or SLO reduced the tumor growth in a similar manner, suggesting that alkylglycerols were involved in this effect. In alkylglycerol-treated mice, metastasis dissemination was reduced by 64 +/- 8%, whereas SLO effect was 30 +/- 9% below control. Purified alkylglycerols also decreased significantly plasmalogen content in tumors, whereas SLO had no such effect. Finally, we demonstrated that a 5-day treatment with alkylglycerols curtailed the presence in tumors of von Willebrand factor, a marker of endothelial cells. This result suggested an anti-angiogenic effect of alkylglycerols. In summary, alkylglycerols were shown to decrease the growth, vascularization, and dissemination of Lewis lung carcinoma tumors in mice. These findings suggest that the antitumor activity of SLO is likely mediated by the presence of alkylglycerols.