Fish Oil Enhances T Cell Function and Tumor Infiltration and Is Correlated with a Cancer Prevention Effect in HER-2/neu but Not PyMT Transgenic Mice

William J. Turbitt, Adam J. Black, Shawntawnee D. Collins, Huicui Meng, Haifang Xu, Sharlene Washington, Cesar Aliaga, Karam El-Bayoumy, Andrea Manni, Connie J. Rogers

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3 Scopus citations


Few studies have explored the effects of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid (n-3 PUFA) supplementation on immune modulation in murine models of mammary carcinogenesis. HER-2/neu and PyMT mice were randomized to 2 dietary interventions: AIN-93G-based diet with 1) 11% of diet (per gram weight) as corn oil (CO) or 2) 10% of diet as menhaden fish oil plus 1% of diet as corn oil (FO). FO significantly reduced the incidence and multiplicity of tumors (P < 0.001) in HER-2/neu, but not PyMT mice. FO-fed mice had significantly larger splenocyte counts than CO-fed mice in both the HER-2/neu and PyMT models; and in both models this was comprised of an increase in most cell types, including Gr-1+/CD11b+ cells. T cells from FO-fed HER-2/neu mice produced significantly more interleukin-2 (P = 0.004) and interferon-γ (P = 0.012) in response to in vitro stimulation with anti-CD3 (0.5 g/ml). Lastly, FO-fed HER-2/neu mice had significantly more tumor immune infiltrates than CO-fed mice, including NK1.1+, F4/80+, and Gr-1+/CD11b+ cells (P ≤ 0.05). Greater Th1 cytokine production and significantly more tumor immune infiltrates in FO-fed Her2/neu mice may account for the cancer prevention effect of fish oil in this model.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)965-975
Number of pages11
JournalNutrition and cancer
Issue number6
StatePublished - Aug 18 2015


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Oncology
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Cancer Research

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