Supplementation With Conjugated Linoleic Acid May Prove Important In Prevention and Treatment

LAKE BLUFF, Ill., May 15 /PRNewswire/ — In a study published in Cancer

Letters, an international scientific journal, researchers at Harvard Medical

School have identified molecular components in the dietary supplement

conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) as potentially influential in the reduction of

colorectal and prostatic cancer cells.

A naturally occurring fatty acid found primarily in milk, beef and dairy

products, CLA is part of the omega-6 fatty acid family. Its mechanism of

action, however, mimics that of omega-3 fatty acids such as fish oil, which

have been proven to have significant health benefits. Mounting scientific

evidence now suggests that some omega-6 dietary fatty acids, such as CLA, can

inhibit tumor growth and proliferation of human cancer cells.

“There are specific isomers within CLA that exhibit an inhibitory effect

on cancer proliferation,” says Dr. John Palombo, Assistant Professor of

Surgery at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School.

He notes that CLA contains two molecular components, or active isomers, which

exhibited the greatest potency against colorectal cancer cells in his studies.

Both isomers were also shown to be moderately effective against prostatic

cancer cells. The specific CLA studied was the CLA One brand from

PharmaNutrients, Inc., Lake Bluff, Illinois.

Encouraging results from the in vitro study have increased scientific

interest in the possible use of CLA and other nutrition and natural

interventions as a safe and effective adjuvant therapeutic agent against

cancer versus aggressive pharmacological therapy that has attending adverse

side effects.

Palombo cautioned that CLA should be studied further. “These in vitro

results indicate that the cancer-reducing properties of CLA or its constituent

isomers are not equivalent. The net reduction in cancer cell proliferation

appears to be dependent upon the type and concentration of CLA isomer used. A

better understanding of novel CLA preparations and their constituent isomers

is required before initiating intervention (human clinical) trials of CLA in

patients undergoing treatment of colorectal and prostate cancer, as well as

individuals at risk for these cancers.”

Other research to date suggests CLA may also help maintain a healthy heart

and veins, maintain healthy cholesterol and triglyceride levels, act as an

anti-oxidant and possess anti-atherogenic properties. Recent human studies

appear to indicate positive effects in helping to control plasma lipids, blood

glucose and body weight when used in conjunction with diet and exercise.

Founded in 1994, PharmaNutrients, Inc. is a leading provider of

proprietary, human-study validated, nutritional bioactive ingredients and

technologies to the nutrients, food and pharmaceutical industries. For

research data, product sales by country, or more information about the

PharmaNutrients line of products and services, visit .

CANCER LETTERS is a journal providing rapid publication of brief articles

in the broad area of cancer research. The journal places emphasis on the

molecular and cell biology of cancer, oncogenes, carcinogenesis, radiation

biology, molecular pathology, hormones and cancer, viral oncology, biology of

cancer and metastasis, molecular cytogenetics, epidemiology; and experimental

therapeutics. For information, visit .

The cited study by Palombo et al was published in the March 28th issue (volume

177, pages 163 – 172, 2002).

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