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Anticancer Res. 2002 Jan-Feb;22(1A):225-30.

Effect of rancid corn oil on some onco/suppressor gene expressions in vivo. A short-term study.

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Department of Medical Chemistry, University Medical School of Pécs, Hungary.


Autooxidation of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) of edible oils results in the formation of fatty acid hydroperoxides that can undergo further chemical transformations to yield a variety of re-arranged and chain-cleavage products. Since the oxidation products of PUFAs have been reported to have cytotoxic and mutagenic effects, the consumption of rancid oils and fats represents a possible health hazard for the population. Storage of corn oil at room temperature and in the refrigerator for a forty-eight month period resulted in two different qualities of oil samples, which were characterized by UV, titrimetric (peroxide value, acid value) and GC-MS methods. Earlier it was demonstrated that the increase of expression of certain oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes is a method of choice for the early detection of carcinogen exposure. Treatment of CBA/Calpha inbred mice with the two oil samples showed significantly increased expression of the Ha-ras gene in all the investigated organs (liver, lung, kidney, thymus and spleen) of the rancid corn oil-treated animals. Expression of the c-myc and the p53 genes was also increased after the rancid corn oil-treatment in all the organs but the thymus of the mice. The results suggest that rancid oils, rich in omega-6 unsaturated fatty acids, could be involved not only in tumor promotion but in initiation as well.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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