J Biomed Transl Res.  2021 Sep;22(3):111-120. 10.12729/jbtr.2021.22.3.111.

Protective effects of folic acid on colon carcino-genesis induced by azoxymethane in mice

  • 1College of Veterinary Medicine and Veterinary Medicine Center, Chungbuk National University, Cheongju 28644, Korea
  • 2Korea Food Culture Promotion Association, Cheongju 28553, Korea
  • 3Department of Biotechnology and Biomedicine, Chungbuk Province College, Cheongju 28160, Korea
  • 4Laboratory of Veterinary Physiology, College of Veterinary Medicine, Chungbuk National University, Cheongju 28644, Korea
  • 5Institute for Stem Cell & Regenerative Medicine (ISCRM), Chungbuk National University, Cheongju 28644, Korea


Colon cancer has been considered a leading cause of cancer-associated death. Folic acid is a vitamin necessary for cellular physiological functions and cell viability. However, the association between folic acid intake and colon cancer has been examined in several prospective cohort studies are controversial. This study investigated the effects of folate intake on colon carcinogenesis and oxidative stress in an azoxymethane (AOM)/dextran sodium sulfate (DSS) institute for cancer research (ICR) mouse model. Thirty male ICR mice (5 weeks old) were divided into the control group and the experimental group supplied 0.03% folic acid via drinking water (50 mL/week/mouse) for 6 weeks. To induce colonic pre-neoplastic lesions, the animals were subcutaneously injected three times weekly with AOM (10 mg/kg body weight), followed by 2% DSS in drinking water for a week. Folic acid supplementation significantly suppressed the total number of aberrant crypt foci and aberrant crypts. Histological image data showed that folic acid supplementation attenuated neoplastic change. In addition, we measured the thiobarbituric acid reactive substances concentration of dry feces samples to identify the effect of folic acid on reactive oxygen accumulation. The folic acid supplementation group had reduced reactive oxygen species levels in dry feces compared to the control group. In con-clusion, these findings indicate that folic acid suppresses colon carcinogenesis and oxidative stress in an AOM/DSS mouse model.


folic acid; colonic neoplasms; reactive oxygen species; oxidative stress
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