Cancer chemoprevention: progress and promise

Eur J Cancer. 1999 Dec;35(14):2031-8. doi: 10.1016/s0959-8049(99)00299-3.


Cancer chemoprevention is the use of agents to inhibit, delay or reverse carcinogenesis. The focus of chemoprevention research in the next millennium will include defining the genotypic and phenotypic (functional and histological) changes during carcinogenesis, the cancer risk conferred by these changes, their modulation in preclinical experimentation and randomised clinical trials by chemopreventive drugs, dietary agents and regimens and treatments resulting from early detection. The key elements of this research effort will be basic and translational risk evaluation programmes; chemopreventive and dietary agent drug discovery and development; development of transgenic animal models; required safety and pharmacology studies; well-designed phase I, II and III chemoprevention studies; and much expanded early detection programmes. The large number of chemoprevention research programmes now ongoing ensures that the promise of chemoprevention will continue to be realised in the next decade.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anticarcinogenic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / analysis
  • Drug Design
  • Health Education
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Neoplasms / prevention & control
  • Public Health
  • Quality of Life
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors


  • Anticarcinogenic Agents
  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Biomarkers, Tumor