Polyphenols and Histone Acetylation

  • Anna K. KissEmail author
Reference work entry


In this chapter, recent findings concerning the effect of polyphenols on histone acetylation and acetylation as posttranslational proteins modification are summarized. The relevance of an in vitro study to an in vivo situation is discussed, as orally administered polyphenols have a limited bioavailability. Additionally, the effects of polyphenol metabolites produced by gut microbiota metabolism and type I and II phase enzyme activity are described.

Polyphenols such as curcumin, gallic acid, epicatechin, and some flavonoids in relatively low concentrations are able to reduce several proinflammatory responses by modulating the HAT and HDAC activities, and at the epigenetic level may affect the proinflammatory state of the human body. On the other hand, the relevance of the observed in vitro epigenetic modulation of green tea, epigallogatechin-3-gallate, and isoflavones in cancer cells are difficult to extrapolate to in vivo conditions as the concentrations used are far higher than those detected in humans. Furthermore, information about the effects of polyphenols’ metabolites on epigenetic modulation is scarce and should be taken into consideration in future studies.


Polyphenols Curcumin Green tea Flavonoids Flavan-3-ol Polyphenols bioavailability Epigenetics Chronic diseases Prevention Regulation of inflammatory state Chemoprevention Histone acetylation 

List of Abbreviations




Androgen receptor


Cardiovascular diseases




Dahl salt-sensitive rats




Estrogen receptor


Zinc finger transcription factor


Histone acetyltransferase


Histone deacetylase


High glucose


Interleukin 6


Monocyte chemoattractant protein-1


Macrophage inflammatory protein


Nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells






Intracellular protein transducing extracellular signals from TGF-β ligands to the nucleus where they activate downstream gene transcription


Transforming growth factor β


Tumor necrosis factor α


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Pharmacognosy and Molecular Basis of Phytotherapy, Faculty of PharmacyMedical University of WarsawWarsawPoland

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