There is ample evidence that shows an inverse relationship between consumption of fruit/vegetable-rich diets and the risk of cancer at various anatomical sites. In this review, we will assess and summarize recent advances on cancer prevention by resveratrol, a natural stilbenoid present in red grapes, peanuts, some common drinks, and dietary supplements. We will focus on data published within the past few years on in vivo model tumor animal studies that reinforce the chemopreventive efficacy of resveratrol against a multitude of cancers, as well as on its sensitization/enhancing activities against tumor cells when used in combination with established chemotherapeutic and pharmaceutical agents. In addition, we will review examples resveratrol-target proteins, denoted RTPs, including the 24-kDa cytosolic protein quinone reductase 2 (NQO2) discovered in our laboratory that may confer resveratrol responsiveness to cancer cells. We will discuss the possible role of NQO2 in mediating cancer prevention by resveratrol. Our analysis of published data strengthen support that resveratrol displays novel roles in various cellular processes, and help to establish an expanded molecular framework for cancer prevention by resveratrol in vivo.
© 2010 International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.