Inhibition of green tea catechins against the growth of cancerous human colon and hepatic epithelial cells

Cancer Lett. 2001 Sep 10;170(1):41-4. doi: 10.1016/s0304-3835(01)00571-7.


The ability of (-)-epicatechin (EC), (-)-epigallocatechin (EGC) and (-)-epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) to inhibit the growth of HCT 116 colorectal and Hep G2 hepatocellular carcinoma cells was examined by MTT and clonogenic assays (CA). The respective catechins inhibited the growth of HCT 116 more strongly than Hep G2. In MTT assay, IC(50) values of EGC and EGCG against HCT 116 grew smaller on prolongation of the exposure times of the cells to the catechins. In CA, however, these two catechins had IC(50) values ranging between 7.6+/-0.4 and 11.2+/-0.5 microM against the same cells regardless of the exposure times. EC showed much weaker growth inhibitions relative to the two aforementioned catechins.

MeSH terms

  • Beverages
  • Catechin / pharmacology*
  • Catechin / therapeutic use
  • Cell Division / drug effects
  • Colonic Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Colonic Neoplasms / pathology
  • Epithelial Cells / drug effects
  • Epithelial Cells / pathology
  • Humans
  • Liver Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Liver Neoplasms / pathology
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured


  • Catechin