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Br J Cancer. 1998 Mar;77(5):731-8.

The effects of n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids on the expression of nm-23 in human cancer cells.

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University Department of Surgery, University of Wales College of Medicine, Heath Park, Cardiff, UK.


This study examined the effect of n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) on the expression of nm-23, a metastasis-suppressor gene, in two highly invasive human cancer cell lines, HT115 and MDA MB 231. A range of n-6 and n-3 PUFAs were tested. We report that while linoleic acid and arachidonic acid reduced the expression of nm-23-H1, gamma linolenic acid (GLA) and its soluble lithium salt markedly increased the expression of the molecules. The stimulation of the expression of nm-23 by GLA was seen at both protein and mRNA levels. Up-regulation of nm-23 was also associated with a reduction of the in vitro invasiveness of these cells. It is concluded that gamma linolenic acid (GLA) enhances the expression of nm-23. This contributes to the inhibition of the in vitro invasion of tumour cells.

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