Cancer chemoprevention: a rapidly evolving field

Br J Cancer. 2013 Jul 9;109(1):1-7. doi: 10.1038/bjc.2013.280. Epub 2013 Jun 4.


Cancer chemoprevention involves the chronic administration of a synthetic, natural or biological agent to reduce or delay the occurrence of malignancy. The potential value of this approach has been demonstrated with trials in breast, prostate and colon cancer. The paradigm for developing new chemopreventive agents has changed markedly in the last decade and now involves extensive preclinical mechanistic evaluation of agents before clinical trials are instituted and a focus on defining biomarkers of activity that can be used as early predictors of efficacy. This review will summarise the current status of the field of chemoprevention and highlight potential new developments.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anticarcinogenic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / analysis
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Neoplasms / prevention & control*


  • Anticarcinogenic Agents
  • Biomarkers, Tumor