Posted on Apr 30, 2013, 6 a.m.
Omega-3 fatty acids and their metabolite products may slow or stop the proliferation of triple-negative breast cancer cells by as much as 90%
Omega-3 fatty acids are found in oily fish like sardines and salmon, and also in oils derived from plants like flax. Previous studies suggest these compounds can negatively affect critical mechanisms in cancer cells, namely those responsible for proliferation and for apoptosis, or programmed cell death. Thomas J. Pogash, from Fox Chase Cancer Center (Pennsylvania, USA), and colleagues tested the effect of large omega-3 parent molecules, as well as their smaller metabolic derivatives, on three luminal cell lines and seven lines that included basal-type triple-negative cells. Omega-3 and its metabolites were observed to inhibit proliferation in all cell lines, but the effect was dramatically more pronounced in the triple-negative cell lines. In addition, the metabolites of omega-3 reduced the motility by 20-60%in the triple-negative basal cell lines. The study authors submit that: “Our data provide novel information regarding the preferential antitumor effect of [Omega-3 fatty acids] and its metabolites on basal type breast cancer.”
Thomas J. Pogash, Ricardo Lopez de Cicco, Benjamin Pressly, Irma H. Russo, Julie A. Himmelberger, Jose Russo, et al. “Polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acids and their metabolites preferentially inhibit cell proliferation and motility in triple negative over luminal breast cancer cells” [Abstract 2600/30].” Presented at American Association for Cancer Research 2013 Annual Meeting, 9 April 2013.