Apigenin: A Promising Molecule for Cancer Prevention

ABSTRACT

Apigenin, a naturally occurring plant flavone, abundantly present in common fruits and vegetables, is recognized as a bioactive flavonoid shown to possess anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anticancer properties. Epidemiologic studies suggest that a diet rich in flavones is related to a decreased risk of certain cancers, particularly cancers of the breast, digestive tract, skin, prostate and certain hematological malignancies. It has been suggested that apigenin may be protective in other diseases that are affected by oxidative process, such as cardiovascular and neurological disorders, although more research needs to be conducted in this regard. Human clinical trials examining the effect of supplementation of apigenin on disease prevention have not been conducted, although there is considerable potential for apigenin to be developed as a cancer chemopreventive agent.

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Fig. 1

Abbreviations

Apaf-1:

apoptotic protease activating factor 1

AR:

androgen receptor

CK:

casein kinase

DFF:

DNA fragmentation factor

EGFR:

epidermal growth factor receptor

ER:

estrogen receptor

ERK:

extracellular signal-activated kinase

HIF:

hypoxia-inducible factor

Id:

Inhibitor of differentiation or DNA binding protein

IGF:

insulin-like growth factor

IGFBP:

insulin-like growth factor binding protein

LPS:

lipopolysaccharide

MAPK:

mitogen-activated protein kinase

MLL:

mixed lineage leukemia

NF-κB:

nuclear factor-kappaB

ODC:

ornithine decarboxylase

PARP:

poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase

PI3K:

phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase

PMA:

phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate

Rb:

retinoblastoma

SOD:

superoxide dismutase

TNF:

tumor necrosis factor

UV:

ultraviolet

VEGF:

vascular endothelial growth factor

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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

The original work from author’s laboratory outlined in this chapter was supported by United States Public Health Service Grants RO1 CA108512, RO1 AT002709 and RO3 CA137667 (SS) and funds from Cancer Research and Prevention Foundation to SG.

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Correspondence to Sanjay Gupta.

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Shukla, S., Gupta, S. Apigenin: A Promising Molecule for Cancer Prevention. Pharm Res 27, 962–978 (2010). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11095-010-0089-7

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KEY WORDS

  • apigenin
  • apoptosis
  • cell cycle
  • chemoprevention
  • flavonoids