Supplemental vitamin A prevents the tumor-induced defect in wound healing.
J Weinzweig, S M Levenson, G Rettura, N Weinzweig, J Mendecki, T H Chang, and E Seifter
Department of Biochemistry, Albert Einstein College of Medicine/Montefiore Medical Center, Bronx, New York 10461.
ABSTRACT: To test our hypothesis that supplemental vitamin A would mitigate the impaired healing that occurs in tumor-bearing animals, six groups of C3H mice, eight per group, eating a standard commercial mouse chow ad libitum that supports normal growth, reproduction, and longevity were innoculated with 200,000 C3HBA cells. When tumors measured approximately 6 mm in diameter, the mice were anesthesized and wounded (dorsal skin incisions and subcutaneous polyvinyl alcohol sponges). Twenty-four hours later, two groups (one continued on the chow and the other started on the chow supplemented with 150,000 IU vitamin A/kg chow) underwent local tumor irradiation; two groups, one ingesting the chow, the other the vitamin A supplemented chow, were started on cyclophosphamide therapy; two groups, one ingesting the chow, the other the vitamin A supplemented chow, received neither local tumor irradiation nor cyclophosphamide therapy. An additional two groups ingesting the chow, one group neither innoculated with tumor nor wounded, the other wounded by not innoculated, served as controls. Wound breaking strength and sponge reparative collagen accumulation (assessed by hydroxyproline proline measurement) were used as indicators of wound healing.
The mice were killed 12 days after wounding. Tumor presence decreased wound breaking strength and sponge hydroxyproline content; these effects were largely negated by supplemental vitamin A. Local tumor irradiation diminished the adverse effect of tumor on sponge reparative collagen content but to a lesser extent than the supplemental vitamin A. Supplemental vitamin A added to the irradiation effect on healing but irradiation did not add to the vitamin A effect. Cyclophosphamide, a systemic radiomimetic anti-tumor agent, did not alter the impaired wound healing of the tumor-bearing mice. Supplemental vitamin A mitigated the impaired wound healing in the cyclophosphamide-treated tumor-bearing mice. Supplemental vitamin A also moderated the effects of wounding, tumor, and tumor therapies (local irradiation and cyclophosphamide) on the increase in adrenal size, leukopenia, thrombocytopenia, and thymic involution (except the last was not moderated in the cyclophosphamide-treated tumor-bearing rats). The splenic enlargement in the untreated tumor-bearing wounded rats and in those treated with cyclophosphamide was lessened by supplemental vitamin A. We hypothesize that these anti-stress effects of vitamin A underlie, in part, its action in mitigating the impaired wound healing of tumor-bearing mice, including those treated by local irradiation or cyclophosphamide. These findings have implications for the care of patients with malignant tumors.
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