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J Med Food. 2014 Aug;17(8):833-41. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2013.2986. Epub 2014 Jul 16.

Kimchi protects against azoxymethane/dextran sulfate sodium-induced colorectal carcinogenesis in mice.

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  • 11 Department of Food Science and Nutrition, Pusan National University , Busan, South Korea .


The chemopreventive effects of different types and quantities of kimchi prepared with different subingredients, including commercial kimchi (CK), standardized kimchi (SK), cancer-preventive kimchi (CPK), and anticancer kimchi (ACK), on colorectal carcinogenesis in mice were evaluated. The development of colon cancer was induced in male BALB/c mice with a single intraperitoneal injection of azoxymethane (AOM, 10 mg/kg body weight) and subsequent treatment with 2% dextran sulfate sodium (DSS) in drinking water for 7 days for two cycles. After exposure to AOM and DSS, treatment with the methanolic extracts from different kimchis, particularly 1.89 g/kg of ACK, significantly increased colon length, decreased the ratio of colon weight/length, and resulted in the lowest number of tumors compared with the other kimchi-treated groups. Histological observation revealed that ACK was able to suppress AOM- and DSS-induced colonic mucosal damage and neoplasia. ACK also significantly decreased the mRNA levels of proinflammatory cytokines (TNF-α, IL-6, and IFN-γ) as well as the mRNA and protein expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2). In addition, the mRNA and protein expression of p53 and p21 was elevated in colon tissues from the ACK-treated mice compared with the other kimchi-treated groups. Our results suggest that kimchi exerted a suppressive effect on AOM- and DSS-induced colorectal carcinogenesis in the BALB/c mice. The anticancer effects of ACK were particularly potent. Thus, it is possible that the health-promoting subingredients added to ACK might be used to prevent colon carcinogenesis in humans.


COX-2; colorectal carcinogenesis; iNOS; kimchi; p21; p53; proinflammatory cytokines

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