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J Med Food. 2007 Mar;10(1):11-7.

Chemopreventive effects of orange peel extract (OPE). I: OPE inhibits intestinal tumor growth in ApcMin/+ mice.

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Strang Cancer Prevention Center at The Rockefeller University, New York, New York 10021, USA.


Orange peel is a rich source of flavonoids with polymethoxyflavones as major constituents, compounds associated with potential antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antitumor activities. We studied the effect of an orange peel extract (OPE) on intestinal tumor growth in Apc(Min/+) mice, a mouse model for human familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP). The OPE contained 30% polymethoxyflavones, a mixture that included tangeretin (19.0%), heptamethoxyflavone (15.24%), tetramethoxyflavone (13.6%), nobiletin (12.49%), hexamethoxyflavone (11.06%), and sinensitin (9.16%). Apc(Min/+) mice were fed one of four diets: (1) AIN-76A control diet; (2) a new Western-style diet (NWD), i.e., AIN-76A diet modified with decreased calcium, vitamin D, and methyl-donor nutrients and increased lipid content); (3) NWD with 0.25% OPE; and (4) NWD with 0.5% OPE, with all additives premixed in the diet. After 9 weeks of feeding NWD to the Apc(Min/+) mice, tumors increased mainly in the colon, with tumor multiplicity increasing 5.3-fold and tumor volume increasing 6.7-fold. After feeding 0.5% OPE in NWD, the development of tumors markedly decreased, with multiplicity decreasing 49% in the small intestine and 38% in the colon. NWD also led to increased apoptosis in intestinal tumors, and 0.5% OPE in NWD further increased apoptosis in tumors of the small and large intestine. Findings indicated that OPE inhibited tumorigenesis in this preclinical mouse model of FAP, and increased apoptosis may have contributed to this effect.

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