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J Res Med Sci. 2015 Sep;20(9):910-8. doi: 10.4103/1735-1995.170634.

The effect of glutamine intake on complications of colorectal and colon cancer treatment: A systematic review.

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Department of Community Nutrition, School of Nutrition and Food Science, Food Security Research Center, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran; Department of Community Nutrition, School of Nutrition and Food Science, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran.



Improvement in complications of antitumor agents and surgery is important to enhance life quality and survival among patients with colon and colorectal cancer. It has been reported that some dietary components such as glutamine (Gln) have beneficial effects on these complications of cancer therapies. However, the results of studies are inconsistent in this area. We performed a review on randomized controlled trials (RCTs) evaluating the effects of Gln intake on complications related to therapeutic strategies of the colon and colorectal cancer.


A systematic search was conducted in PubMed, Google Scholar, Cochrane Library, and SID databases to find the relevant literature, published before July 2015.


Nine RCTs of 217 screened articles were included in this systematic review. The results of the present review suggested that Gln intake among colon and colorectal cancer patients could reduce some complications induced by chemotherapy such as gut mucositis and diarrhea and improve nitrogen balance, immune system and wound healing after surgery, whereas benefits role of Gln on radiochemotherapy side effects were not provided.


The role of Gln intake on some improvement of complications induced by cancer therapeutic methods and shorten the length of hospital stay may be promising and one that is worthy of further exploration.


Cancer; colon; colorectal; glutamine; supplementation

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