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December 1986

Chemoprevention of Colorectal Neoplasms: Ascorbic Acid and β-Carotene

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Surgery (Dr Colacchio) and Pathology (Dr Memoli), Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Hanover, NH.

Arch Surg. 1986;121(12):1421-1424. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1986.01400120071012

• The organospecific, 1,2-dimethylhydrazine—induced rat tumor model was used to test tumor formation in groups of animals receiving (1) regular chow, (2) powdered chow with 7%/wt ascorbic acid supplement, (3) pelleted chow with 1%/wt β-carotene supplement, and (4) pelleted chow with placebo beadlets. Following a 16-week induction period, animals were killed and tumor formation was recorded. Tumor formation in the ascorbic acid supplement group was found to be significantly less than the control group. The β-carotene group showed no difference in tumor formation compared with the placebo-beadlet control group. Tumor incidence was generally the same between the two control groups, and the ascorbic acid group had significantly fewer tumors than the β-carotene group. In sum, ascorbic acid supplements in high doses significantly decreased tumor formation, whereas β-carotene supplements in moderately high doses had no effect on tumor formation in this model.

(Arch Surg 1986;121:1421-1424)

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