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Food Chem Toxicol. 2010 May;48(5):1288-92. doi: 10.1016/j.fct.2010.02.024. Epub 2010 Feb 20.

Deer velvet supplementation decreases the grade and metastasis of azoxymethane-induced colon cancer in the male rat.

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Gribbles Veterinary Pathology, Palmerston North, New Zealand.


Since deer velvet (DV) extract promotes angiogenesis, its ability to modulate the growth and invasiveness of colon tumours was investigated. Male Wistar rats were each given a subcutaneous injection of azoxymethane (AOM) at 15 mg/kg once a week for 3 weeks. One week following the last dose of AOM the rats received either 1g/kg of DV delivered in a cube of raspberry gelatin or plain raspberry gelatin daily for 26 weeks. At necropsy, tumours were measured and the distance from the anus was recorded. Tissue samples were categorised according to the Astler-Coller system. The results showed that there were no significant differences in most parameters examined (i.e. body weight gain, multiplicity, tumour volume and incidence). The only statistically significant differences seen were associated with metastasis and tumour grade. Specifically, more of the tumours in the DV-treated rats were of a lower grade compared to the controls, both when all tumour sites were considered (0.91 vs. 0.66, p<0.0001), as well as those located only in the colon (0.95 vs. 0.84, p<0.03). Therefore, this study can confidently conclude that DV does not increase the incidence, multiplicity, metastasis or tumour volume of AOM-induced colon cancer in the rat.

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