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Polski Merkuriusz Lekarski 2006 May;20(119):598-601.

Biological action and clinical application of shark liver oil

Natalia Lewkowicz, Przemysław Lewkowicz, Anna Kurnatowska, Henryk Tchórzewski


Fish oils contain several active compounds that modify cell activity and influence various functions of the body. Shark liver oils are rich in alkylglycerols and squalene, but contain relatively low amounts of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids. Alkylglycerols may control immune response possibly throw modification of platelet activating factor (PAF) and diacylglycerol (DAG) production. Squalene enhances antigen presentation and induction of inflammatory response. Moreover, alkylglycerols and squalene have antitumour activity, that is possibly based on different mechanisms, ie., induction of apoptosis of neoplastic cells, suppression of signal transduction, inhibition of angiogenesis and promoting of transmembrane transport of cytotoxic agents. Shark liver oil has been found to be useful in treatment of conditions resulted from inadequate immune response, and in adjunctive treatment of several types of cancer.