Consumption of berries and red fruits rich in polyphenols may contribute to the reduction of colon cancer through mechanisms not yet understood. In this study, we investigated the response of subconfluent Caco-2 cells (a human colon carcinoma model) to repetitive exposure (2 h a day for a 4-day period) of a subtoxic dose of a chokeberry (Aronia melanocarpa) juice containing mixed polyphenols. To mimic physiological conditions, we subjected the chokeberry juice to in vitro gastric and pancreatic digestion. The effects on viability, proliferation and cell cycle were determined, and changes in the expression of genes in response to the chokeberry treatment were screened using Affymetrix oligonucleotide microarrays. Exposure to the chokeberry juice inhibited Caco-2 cell proliferation by causing G(2)/M cell cycle arrest. We detected changes in the expression of a group of genes involved in cell growth and proliferation and cell cycle regulation, as well as those associated to colorectal cancer. A selection of these genes was further confirmed by quantitative RT-PCR. Among these, the tumor suppressor carcinoembryonic antigen-related cell adhesion molecule 1 (CEACAM1), whose expression is known to be reduced in the majority of early adenomas and carcinomas, was up-regulated by the treatment both at the mRNA and protein levels (as shown by flow cytometry analysis). CEACAM1, with a significant regulatory role on cell proliferation of particular interest at early stages of cancer development, may be a potential target for chemoprevention by food components such as those present in polyphenol-rich fruits.