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Nutr Cancer. 2007;57(2):194-200.

Null effect of dietary restriction on prostate carcinogenesis in the Wistar-Unilever rat.

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  • 1Life Sciences Group, IIT Research Institute, Chicago, IL 60616, USA.


Chronic dietary restriction inhibits carcinogenesis in several sites in laboratory animals. To determine the effects of dietary restriction on prostate carcinogenesis, prostate cancers were induced in male Wistar-Unilever rats by a sequential regimen of cyproterone acetate (50 mg/day; 21 days); testosterone propionate (100 mg/kg/day; 3 days); N-methyl-N-nitrosourea [MNU; 30 mg/kg; single dose]; and testosterone (subcutaneous implants of 2 pellets containing 40 mg each). Dietary restriction (0% [ad libitum control], 15%, or 30%) was initiated 2 wk post-MNU, and continued until study termination at 12 mo. Dietary restriction induced a rapid suppression of body weight gain but conferred no protection against prostate carcinogenesis. 74% of carcinogen-treated ad libitum controls developed accessory sex gland cancers, versus cancer incidences of 64% and 72% in groups restricted by 15% and 30%, respectively. Similarly, 44% of dietary controls developed cancers limited to the dorsolateral/prostate, versus incidences of 45% and 53% in groups restricted by 15% and 30%. The results of the present study do not support the hypothesis that prostate carcinogenesis can be prevented by reducing caloric intake. Reducing mean body weight by up to 25% through chronic dietary restriction has no effect on the induction of prostate cancers in the Wistar-Unilever rat model.

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