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Blackberry (Rubus spp.) extract maternal and/or paternal consumption effects on female offspring susceptibility to chemically-induced breast carcinogenesis

Grant number: 13/12402-6
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): October 01, 2013
Effective date (End): February 29, 2016
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Food Science and Technology - Food Science
Principal researcher:Thomas Prates Ong
Grantee:Vanessa Cardoso Pires
Home Institution: Faculdade de Ciências Farmacêuticas (FCF). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:13/07914-8 - FoRC - Food Research Center, AP.CEPID


Maternal and more recently paternal nutritional patterns may influence offspring susceptibility to chronic diseases, including breast cancer. Embryonic/fetal period is characterized by rapid cell division and differentiation and inadequate nutritional conditions in early life may program altered phenotypes in adult life. On the other hand, early development may comprise a relevant window of opportunity to establish health promoting and chronic disease risk reduction nutritional strategies throughout the lifecycle. Because of its high polyphenolic compounds content, interest has been directed towards the potential of maternal and paternal berry fruits consumption in this regard. Blackberry (Rubus spp.) presents high levels of anthocyanins and ellagitannins, with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anticarcinogenic potential. Furthermore, polyphenolic compounds can modulate epigenetic (DNA methylation and histone modifications), that display great plasticity during fetal period. Thus, we hypothesize that maternal and paternal consumption of blackberry aqueous extract, containing anthocyanins and ellagitannins, may reduce female offspring susceptibility to breast cancer development. To test this hypothesis, male and/or female C57BL/6 mice will be treated with this extract. Their female offspring will be submitted to a breast carcinogenesis model and cellular, molecular and epigenetic parameters will be evaluated in their mammary glands. (AU)

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