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ASN Neuro. 2010 Jul 23;2(3):e00038. doi: 10.1042/AN20100002.

Calorie restriction as an anti-invasive therapy for malignant brain cancer in the VM mouse.

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  • 1Boston College, 140 Commonwealth Avenue, Chestnut Hill, MA 02467, U.S.A.


GBM (glioblastoma multiforme) is the most aggressive and invasive form of primary human brain cancer. We recently developed a novel brain cancer model in the inbred VM mouse strain that shares several characteristics with human GBM. Using bioluminescence imaging, we tested the efficacy of CR (calorie restriction) for its ability to reduce tumour size and invasion. CR targets glycolysis and rapid tumour cell growth in part by lowering circulating glucose levels. The VM-M3 tumour cells were implanted intracerebrally in the syngeneic VM mouse host. Approx. 12-15 days post-implantation, brains were removed and both ipsilateral and contralateral hemispheres were imaged to measure bioluminescence of invading tumour cells. CR significantly reduced the invasion of tumour cells from the implanted ipsilateral hemisphere into the contralateral hemisphere. The total percentage of Ki-67-stained cells within the primary tumour and the total number of blood vessels was also significantly lower in the CR-treated mice than in the mice fed ad libitum, suggesting that CR is anti-proliferative and anti-angiogenic. Our findings indicate that the VM-M3 GBM model is a valuable tool for studying brain tumour cell invasion and for evaluating potential therapeutic approaches for managing invasive brain cancer. In addition, we show that CR can be effective in reducing malignant brain tumour growth and invasion.


AL, ad libitum; CR, calorie restriction; GBM, glioblastoma multiforme; H & E, haematoxylin and eosin; IGF-1, insulin-like growth factor 1; Ki-67; VM mouse; VM-M3, mouse malignant glioma; VM-M3/Fluc, VM-M3 cells labelled with firefly luciferase; calorie restriction; glioblastoma multiforme; i.c., intracerebrally

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