Author(s): Iishi H, Tatsuta M, Baba M, Okuda S, Taniguchi H, Iishi H, Tatsuta M, Baba M, Okuda S, Taniguchi H
Abstract Share this page
Abstract The effect of the opioid receptor agonist methionine enkephalin (Met-enkephalin) and the opioid receptor antagonist naloxone on colonic carcinogenesis induced by azoxymethane was investigated in Wistar rats. Rats received ten weekly injections of 7.4 mg/kg of body weight of azoxymethane and injections of Met-enkephalin (50 micrograms/kg of body weight), naloxone (2 mg/kg of body weight), or Met-enkephalin (50 micrograms/kg of body weight) plus naloxone (2 mg/kg of body weight) once every 2 days. In wk 40, the group treated with Met-enkephalin had a significantly increased incidence of colonic tumors. A combination of Met-enkephalin and naloxone attenuated the enhancing effect by Met-enkephalin on the development of colonic tumors. Administration of naloxone alone had no influence on colonic tumorigenesis. During and after administration of the carcinogen, the bromodeoxyuridine-labeling indices of the colon mucosa and/or cancers were significantly increased in rats treated with Met-enkephalin. However, a combination of Met-enkephalin and naloxone significantly decreased the labeling indices of the colon mucosa and/or cancers. These findings indicate that Met-enkephalin enhanced colon carcinogenesis and that naloxone attenuated this enhancement. Because naloxone is an opioid receptor antagonist, these findings also indicate that the enhancing effect of Met-enkephalin on colon carcinogenesis may be mediated through opioid receptors.
This article was published in Cancer Res
and referenced in Cancer Surgery