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Cancer Chemother Pharmacol. 1996;38 Suppl:S48-52.

Toxohormones responsible for cancer cachexia syndrome in nude mice bearing human cancer cell lines.

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  • 1Growth Factor Division, National Cancer Center Research Institute, Tokyo, Japan.


Toxohormones are tumor-derived factors that induce cancer cachexia syndrome in tumor-bearing animals. Nude mice bearing tumors induced by eight human cancer cell lines with this activity were studied for cytokine production and expression of a newly identified gene, ob, which has the ability to control body weight. A melanoma cell line, SEKI, and a neuroepithelioma cell line, NAGAI, produced a large amount of the cytokine, leukemia-inhibitory factor (LIF). A uterine carcinoma cell line, Yumoto, produced a large amount of interleukin 6 (IL-6), and an oral cavity carcinoma cell line, OCC-1C, concomitantly produced LIF, IL-6, and IL-11. Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction studies revealed that ob gene mRNA was not expressed in any of these cell lines, suggesting that the gene does not have a role as a tumor product responsible for cancer cachexia in this model. These findings suggest that in four of eight animal models in which cancer cachexia syndrome developed, LIF, IL-6, or possibly IL-11 produced by cancer cells may be toxohormones, but in the remaining four cancer cell lines the mechanism responsible for cachexia syndrome remains unknown.

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