Effects of Dietary Fat and Protein on DMH-Induced Tumor Development and Immune Responses

Robert L. Nutter, Janies D. Kettering, Raydolfo M. Aprecio, Douglas A. Weeks, Daila S. Gridley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Although in three different mouse tumor systems with corn oil as dietary fat we previously found that milk protein decreased tumor development compared with beef, the results were reversed in 1, 2-dimethylhydrazine (DMH)-injected mice. The purpose of this study was to determine if the latter result was due to the protein source. BALB/c mice (n = 280) were divided into five diet groups and injected 10 times at weekly intervals with DMH (20 mg/kg wt) or saline. Four diets contained 11% protein (casein, milk, or beef) and 5 % fat (corn oil or beef tallow), and the AIN-76A diet was used as a control diet. The source of fat was a significant modulator of tumor development Corn oil markedly increased total tumor volume and the number of tumors per mouse compared with beef tallow. Its tumor-enhancing effects were evident when it was combined with milk but not with casein. In addition, significantly lower lymphoproliferation and T-cell cytotoxicity against colon tumor cell targets was associated with corn oil consumption, whereas nonfat milk as the protein source was related to normal oxidative burst capacity of phagocytes. These results demonstrate that the source of dietary fat, in addition to the protein source, has a profound effect on both tumor development and immune responsiveness in this animal tumor system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)141-152
Number of pages12
JournalNutrition and Cancer
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 1 1990
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Oncology
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Cancer Research


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