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Nutrition. 2003 Apr;19(4):305-9.

Gamma-linolenic acid therapy of human gliomas.

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  • 1Department of Neurosurgery, Vidyasagar Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, New Delhi, India.



We investigated the effect of intratumoral administration of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) in human gliomas.


We evaluated the effect of the administration of 1 mg of GLA for 7 d via a cerebral reservoir placed into the tumor bed or by direct intratumoral delivery in nine patients who had grade 4 disease and recurrent glioma after surgery, radiation, or chemotherapy.


There was some, but not dramatic, improvement in patients' survival. No significant prolongation of life span was expected considering the advanced nature of the disease. Nevertheless, it was encouraging that GLA produced no significant side effects in any patient. Regression of the cerebral gliomas was visualized on computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging.


Based on results of the present and previous studies, we believe that GLA is a safe antitumor agent and that higher doses of GLA should be investigated in future studies.

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