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Ellen Jensen


Evening Primrose oil (EPO) is a suspected anticarcinogen, however, little is known about its method of stopping and/or slowing tumor growth. The present research used S. marcescens, S. typhimurium, Escherichia coli, Staphlyococcus aureus, and S. cerevisiae as cellular models to investigate the antimutagenic properties of EPO. Ultraviolet radiation was used as a mutagen. Each organism was screened for mutations at various lengths of UV light exposure and plated on appropriate media. One period of UV exposure that represented 10% population kill was chosen for each organism, and the organism was once again exposed to UV light for this time interval, but plated on media enhanced with EPO. S. marcescens colonies were also plated on Tryptic Soy Agar enhanced with vitamin C, vitamin A, and vitamin E. When S. marcescens, S. tyhphimurium, and S. cerevisiae were plated on media with EPO, the colonies grew in a consistent lawn after UV exposure, with little or no detectable mutation rate. No significant difference in survival was found when S. marcescens colonies were plated on media enhanced with vitamins. An Ames strain of S. typhimurium his- with a non-functioning uvrB gene did not grow on minimal media + EPO after exposed to UV light. Rad gene mutants of S. cerevisiae grew in a lawn on Yeast Mold Agar + EPO. It does not appear that EPO is dependent upon an intact UV repair system in preventing mutation, but perhaps enhances proofreading or mismatch repair of DNA.

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