Chemopreventive effects of bovine lactoferrin (bLF), previously shown to strongly inhibit intestinal carcinogenesis in rats (K. Sekine, E. Watanabe, J. Nakamura, N. Takasuka, D.J. Kim, M. Asamoto, V. Krutovskikh, T.H. Baba, T. Ota, M.A. Moore, M. Masuda, H. Sugimoto, H. Nishino, T. Kakizoe, H. Tsuda, Inhibition of azoxymethane-initiated colon tumor by bovine lactoferrin administration in F344 rats, Jpn. J. Cancer Res. 88 (1997) 523-526; K. Sekine, Y. Ushida, T. Kuhara, M. Iigo, H. Baba-Toriyama, M.A. Moore, M. Murakoshi, Y. Satomi, H. Nishino, T. Kakizoe, H. Tsuda, Inhibition of initiation and early stage development of aberrant crypt foci and enhanced natural killer activity in male rats administered bovine lactoferrin concomitantly with azoxymethane, Cancer Lett. 121 (1997) 211-216), on spontaneous intestinal polyp development were assessed in the ApcMin mouse, a model for both familial adenomatous polyposis and sporadic colon cancers. In the experiment, 54 mice at 6 weeks of age were given 2% bLF (15 mice), 0.2% bLF (15 mice) and AIN-93G (24 mice) as basal diet ad libitum for 8 weeks. An overall tendency for a reduction in the total number of polyps in the small intestine was evident in the bLF-treated animals, along with significant suppression in the jejunum at the 2% dose (P < 0.05, 68% of the control). In addition, body growth suppression, presumed to be due to anemia and/or intussusception as a consequence of numerous polyps in the intestine, was alleviated. No toxic effects were observed in the intestinal epithelium. Although not as obvious as observed for the rat case, the data suggest that bLF may be a chemopreventor of intestinal polyposis.