Skip to main content

Green tea catechin induced phagocytosis can be blocked by catalase and an inhibitor of transient receptor potential melastatin 2 (TRPM2)


The major polyphenols in green tea, (−)-epigallocatechin and (−)-epigallocatechin gallate, have been shown to enhance the phagocytic activity of macrophage-like cells; however, the mechanism involved was not clarified. In this study, we have identified that the catechins induced phagocytosis can be blocked by catalase and an inhibitor of transient receptor potential melastatin 2.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4
Fig. 5
Fig. 6


  1. Arakawa H, Maeda M, Okubo S, Shimamura T (2004) Role of hydrogen peroxide in bactericidal action of catechin. Biol Pharm Bull 27:277–281

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  2. Azam S, Hadi N, Khan NU, Hadi SM (2004) Prooxidant property of green tea polyphenols epicatechin and epigallocatechin-3-gallate: implications for anticancer properties. Toxicol In Vitro 18:555–561

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  3. Di A, Gao XP, Qian F, Kawamura T, Han J, Hecquet C, Ye RD, Vogel SM, Malik AB (2011) The redox-sensitive cation channel TRPM2 modulates phagocyte ROS production and inflammation. Nat Immunol 13:29–34

    Article  Google Scholar 

  4. Fujimura Y, Umeda D, Yano S, Maeda-Yamamoto M, Yamada K, Tachibana H (2007) The 67 kDa laminin receptor as a primary determinant of anti-allergic effects of O-methylated EGCG. Biochem Biophys Res Commun 364:79–85

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  5. Furukawa A, Oikawa S, Murata M, Hiraku Y, Kawanishi S (2003) (−)-Epigallocatechin gallate causes oxidative damage to isolated and cellular DNA. Biochem Pharmacol 66:1769–1778

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  6. Gardella S, Andrei C, Poggi A, Zocchi MR, Rubartelli A (2000) Control of interleukin-18 secretion by dendritic cells: role of calcium influxes. FEBS Lett 481:245–248

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  7. Gardella S, Andrei C, Lotti LV, Poggi A, Torrisi MR, Zocchi MR, Rubartelli A (2001) CD8(+) T lymphocytes induce polarized exocytosis of secretory lysosomes by dendritic cells with release of interleukin-1beta and cathepsin D. Blood 98:2152–2159

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  8. Kashio M, Sokabe T, Shintaku K, Uematsu T, Fukuta N, Kobayashi N, Mori Y, Tominaga M (2012) Redox signal-mediated sensitization of transient receptor potential melastatin 2 (TRPM2) to temperature affects macrophage functions. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 109:6745–6750

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  9. Matoba T, Shimokawa H, Nakashima M, Hirakawa Y, Mukai Y, Hirano K, Kanaide H, Takeshita A (2000) Hydrogen peroxide is an endothelium-derived hyperpolarizing factor in mice. J Clin Invest 106:1521–1530

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  10. Monobe M, Ema K, Kato F, Hirokane H, Maeda-Yamamoto M (2007) Technique for screening immune-enhancing polysaccharides in food using 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3-differentiated HL60 cells. J Agric Food Chem 55:2543–2547

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  11. Monobe M, Ema K, Tokuda Y, Maeda-Yamamoto M (2010) Enhancement of phagocytic activity of macrophage-like cells by pyrogallol-type green tea polyphenols through caspase signaling pathways. Cytotechnology 62:201–203

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  12. Oikawa S, Furukawaa A, Asada H, Hirakawa K, Kawanishi S (2003) Catechins induce oxidative damage to cellular and isolated DNA through the generation of reactive oxygen species. Free Radic Res 37:881–890

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  13. Sugisawa A, Umegaki K (2002) Physiological concentrations of (−)-epigallocatechin-3-O-gallate (EGCg) prevent chromosomal damage induced by reactive oxygen species in WIL2-NS cells. J Nutr 132:1836–1839

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  14. Tachibana H, Koga K, Fujimura Y, Yamada K (2004) A receptor for green tea polyphenol EGCG. Nat Struct Mol Biol 11:380–381

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  15. Vanhoutte PM (2001) Endothelium-derived free radicals: for worse and for better. J Clin Invest 107:23–25

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  16. Wehrhahn J, Kraft R, Harteneck C, Hauschildt S (2010) Transient receptor potential melastatin 2 is required for lipopolysaccharide-induced cytokine production in human monocytes. J Immunol 184:2386–2393

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  17. Yamamoto S, Shimizu S, Kiyonaka S, Takahashi N, Wajima T, Hara Y, Negoro T, Hiroi T, Kiuchi Y, Okada T, Kaneko S, Lange I, Fleig A, Penner R, Nishi M, Takeshima H, Mori Y (2008) TRPM2-mediated Ca2 + influx induces chemokine production in monocytes that aggravates inflammatory neutrophil infiltration. Nat Med 14:738–747

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

Download references


This work was supported by a grant for project research (Development of fundamental technology for analysis and evaluation of functional agricultural products and functional foods), Ministry of Agriculture, Fishery and Forestry, Japan.

Author information



Corresponding author

Correspondence to Manami Monobe.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Monobe, M., Ema, K., Tokuda, Y. et al. Green tea catechin induced phagocytosis can be blocked by catalase and an inhibitor of transient receptor potential melastatin 2 (TRPM2). Cytotechnology 66, 561–566 (2014).

Download citation


  • (−)-Epigallocatechin (EGC)
  • (−)-Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG)
  • Phagocytosis
  • TRPM2
  • Hydrogen peroxide