Inhibition of carcinogenesis by tea constituents

Semin Cancer Biol. 2007 Oct;17(5):395-402. doi: 10.1016/j.semcancer.2007.06.013. Epub 2007 Jul 4.


The possible cancer preventive activity of tea has received much attention in recent years. The inhibitory activities of tea and tea constituents against carcinogenesis at different organ sites have been demonstrated in many animal models. The effect of tea consumption on human cancers, however, remains inconclusive. The mechanisms of action of tea polyphenols, especially EGCG, the most abundant and active catechin, have been extensively investigated. Most of the studies, however, were based on cell culture systems, and these mechanisms need to be evaluated and verified in animal models or humans in order to gain more understanding on the effect of tea consumption on human cancer. Human intervention trials are warranted to determine the possible prevention of cancer of specific sites by preparation of tea constituents.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anticarcinogenic Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Anticarcinogenic Agents / analysis
  • Catechin / administration & dosage
  • Catechin / analogs & derivatives*
  • Catechin / analysis
  • Cell Transformation, Neoplastic / drug effects*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Flavonoids / administration & dosage*
  • Flavonoids / analysis
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / prevention & control*
  • Phenols / administration & dosage*
  • Phenols / analysis
  • Polyphenols
  • Tea / chemistry*


  • Anticarcinogenic Agents
  • Flavonoids
  • Phenols
  • Polyphenols
  • Tea
  • Catechin
  • epigallocatechin gallate