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Immunocompetent murine model of cancer cachexia for head and neck squamous cell carcinoma

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Muscle wasting and weight loss were observed when carcinomas were induced in a murine model of head and neck squamous cell carcinomas. Our hypothesis was C3H/HeN mice would develop evidence of cachexia when injected with tumor cells


Age- and weight-matched female mice were injected with SCCF/VII cells. Daily food intake and weights were measured. Body composition and analysis of circulating cytokines was performed. At the completion of experiments, hind legs were weighed. Muscle atrophy was detected using analysis for muscle ring finger 1 (MuRF1). The tumor-derived lipid mobilizing factor (LMF) was measured.


Despite increased food intake, tumor-bearing mice lost weight and experienced reduced hind leg weights. Interleukin-1beta (IL-1beta) was increased and MuRF1 was present in tumor-bearing mice but not controls. LMF was present in SCCF/VII cells.


In this immunocompetent murine model, we demonstrated the development of cancer cachexia in mice inoculated with SCCF cells, which express LMF. There was increased serum IL-1beta, weight loss, and muscle wasting and atrophy in tumor-bearing mice.

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