Type IV collagenase matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), especially MMP-2 and MMP-9, have been found to promote invasion and metastasis of malignant tumors. Extracellular matrix (ECM) degradation by MMPs and increased expression of MMPs in cancer cells and tumor microvascular endothelial cells make MMPs an attractive target for cancer. Focused on a common pathomechanism of cancer growth and invasion, the disintegration of connective tissue, we used natural approaches to increase the integrity and strength of connective tissues. Utilizing the principle of nutrition synergy, we developed a novel micronutrient mixture (NM) containing lysine, proline, ascorbic acid and green tea extract. This study evaluates the potency of the components EGCG and green tea extract independently compared to that of NM on modulation of patterns of MMP-2 and MMP-9 expression in four cancer cell lines expressing MMP-2, MMP-9 or both. Human fibrosarcoma (HT-1080), hepatocellular carcinoma (SK-Hep-1), glioblastoma (T-98G), uterine leiomyosarcoma (SK-UT-1) cell lines were obtained from ATCC and grown in minimum essential medium (MEM) supplemented with 10% FBS, penicillin (100 U/ml) and streptomycin (100 mg/ml) in 24-well tissue culture plates. At near confluence, the cells were treated with agents dissolved in media and tested at concentrations indicated in triplicate at each dose. Cells were also treated with PMA 100 ng/ml to study enhanced expression of MMP-9. MMP expression was assessed by gelatinase zymography. Fibrosarcoma and hepatocellular carcinoma cells expressed both MMP-2 and MMP-9. Glioblastoma cells expressed MMP-2 and PMA treatment induced MMP-9 expression. Uterine leimyosarcoma cells expressed no MMPs but PMA induced MMP-9. NM was the most potent dose-dependent inhibitor of MMPs, followed by green tea extract and EGCG. In conclusion, these results suggest the enhanced efficacy of nutrients working in synergy to modulate complex pathways such as MMP expression.