Effect of dietary caraway (Carum carviL.) on aberrant crypt foci development, fecal steroids, and intestinal alkaline phosphatase activities in 1,2-dimethylhydrazine-induced colon carcinogenesis

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Colon cancer is one of the most common malignancies in many regions of the world and is thought to arise from the accumulation of mutations in a single epithelial cell of the colon and rectum. Caraway (Carum carvi L. Umbelliferae) is a shrub with a long history as a medicinal plant since ancient times. The effect of different doses of caraway (CC) on the formation of aberrant crypt foci (ACF) and the levels of fecal bile acids, neutral sterols, and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activities were studied in 1,2-dimethylhydrazine (DMH)-induced colon cancer in rats. Animals were randomized into 6 groups. Group 1 served as control, and group 2 received 90 mg/kg body weight caraway orally everyday. Groups 3-6 rats were given subcutaneous injections of DMH (20 mg/kg body weight) once a week for the first 4 weeks to induce ACF. Rats in groups 4-6, in addition to DMH injections, received caraway at 30, 60, and 90 mg/kg body weight respectively p.o. everyday until the end of whole experimental period of 15 weeks. Caraway supplementation significantly reduced ACF development and also decreased the levels of fecal bile acids, neutral sterols, and tissue ALP activities. The histological alterations induced by DMH were also significantly improved. Overall, our results showed that all 3 doses of caraway inhibited tumorigenesis though the effect of the intermediary dose of 60 mg/kg body weight was more pronounced.

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