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Advances in Pharmacological Sciences
Volume 2015 (2015), Article ID 132873, 8 pages
Research Article

Spirulina platensis Lacks Antitumor Effect against Solid Ehrlich Carcinoma in Female Mice

1Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Pharmacy, Zagazig University, Zagazig 44519, Egypt
2Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Pharmacy, Tabuk University, Tabuk 71491, Saudi Arabia

Received 20 May 2015; Revised 4 August 2015; Accepted 9 August 2015

Academic Editor: Antonio Ferrer-Montiel

Copyright © 2015 Waleed Barakat et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Spirulina is a blue-green alga used as a dietary supplement. It has been shown to possess anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and hepatoprotective properties. This study was designed to evaluate the antitumor effect of spirulina (200 and 800 mg/kg) against a murine model of solid Ehrlich carcinoma compared to a standard chemotherapeutic drug, 5-fluorouracil (20 mg/kg). Untreated mice developed a palpable solid tumor after 13 days. Unlike fluorouracil, spirulina at the investigated two dose levels failed to exert any protective effect. In addition, spirulina did not potentiate the antitumor effect of fluorouracil when they were administered concurrently. Interestingly, their combined administration resulted in a dose-dependent increase in mortality. The present study demonstrates that spirulina lacks antitumor effect against this model of solid Ehrlich carcinoma and increased mortality when combined with fluorouracil. However, the implicated mechanism is still elusive.