Prevention of spontaneous prostate-related cancer in Lobund-Wistar rats by a soy protein isolate/isoflavone diet.Prostate 2000; 45(2):101-5P
Epidemiological surveys recorded that men in the Orient (Japan and China) consuming diets high in soy food were at low risk of developing clinical prostate cancer, compared to a relatively high risk among men in the West who consumed diets low in soy food. Soybeans contain phytoestrogens (isoflavones) with many recorded anticancer mechanisms. The Lobund-Wistar (L-W) rat is a unique model system: approximately 30% develop metastasizing adenocarcinomas spontaneously in the anterior prostate-seminal vesicle complex (P-SV), from which the tumors expand into the dorsolateral lobes. L-W rats are inherently predisposed, possibly by unusually high levels of circulating testosterone (T), to develop P-SV tumors which are T-dependent in the early stages and T-independent in advanced stages of tumorigenesis.
L-W rats were fed two diets from age 2-24 months: 1) natural ingredient diet L-485 (Harlan TekLad Diets, Madison, WI) containing soy meal, or 2) a modified starch-casein diet in which soy protein isolate/isoflavones (SPII) replaced casein as a source of protein.
At age 24 months, 3 of 99 (3%) rats on diet SPII and 30 of 100 (30%) rats on diet L-485 developed spontaneous P-SV cancers. Rats on the SPII diet manifested a significant reduction of circulating T, approaching physiological levels. Failure of the rats on diet L-485 to prevent P-SV cancer development suggests that soy meal contained a factor(s) that blocked the antiandrogenic action of the phytoestrogen.
The spontaneous development of P-SV cancers was significantly prevented in L-W rats consuming the SPII diet from age 2-24 months, possibly through an agonist effect of the soy-derived phytoestrogens.