JUNKO SATO, The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston


The significance of nutritional factors in cancer research has been strongly emphasized. Such research is concerned not only with epidemiological effects relative to dietary factors on the causation of cancer, but with nutritional effects as an energy source on the prevention of cancer. Many studies speculate that the energy flow between tumor and host can be regulated by dietary intake. However, little knowledge on the comparison of the specific nutritional and energy requirements of different cells and tissues is available. Most popular and essential energy sources for the body are the carbohydrates. Among them, xylitol is known as efficient an energy source as glucose. In carbohydrate metabolism, glycolysis is one of the major energy producing pathways. However, recently the existence of an alternate catabolic pathway in mammals for carbohydrate besides glycolysis, i.e. bypass through triosephosphates to lactate via methylglyoxal has been suggested. This bypass was implicated to regulate glycolysis and also be responsible for the fluctuation in the levels of a regulator of cell growth. Methylglyoxal itself is known as a cancerostatic agent. The alterations of biochemical parameters in xylitol metabolism in animals indicated that xylitol may be metabolized through a methylglyoxal pathway. To elucidate the biological effect of xylitol as an energy source and the biological effect of its metabolites as a cancerostatis agent, the mode and extent of metabolism must be understood in tumor-bearing animals. Differential utilization of xylitol and glucose, if any, between tumor and host in such animals may exert tissue selective effects on both in terms of methylglyoxal formation and energy provision. The aim of this work was to assess the extent to which the differential utilization of xylitol might be used to generate different metabolic pathways in tumor and host, and to consider a role of nutrition in cancer. The results disclose that the existence of a pathway for biological methylglyoxal formation in normal rat liver has been confirmed in single cell suspension; the metabolic significance of the methylglyoxal pathway in the metabolism of glucose and xylitol has been evaluated quantitatively in normal rat liver and the differential metabolism of glucose and xylitol through overall catabolic pathways of carbohydrates has been studied in normal hepatic cells, AS-30D hepatoma and other several hepatoma lines.

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Recommended Citation

SATO, JUNKO, "XYLITOL METABOLISM IN RAT LIVER AND HEPATOCELLULAR CARCINOMAS" (1980). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI8111399.