Resveratrol (3,4′,5-trihydroxy-trans-stilbene) is a dietary polyphenol derived from grapes, berries, peanuts, and other plant sources. During the last decade, resveratrol has been shown to possess a fascinating spectrum of pharmacologic properties. Multiple biochemical and molecular actions seem to contribute to resveratrol effects against precancerous or cancer cells. Resveratrol affects all three discrete stages of carcinogenesis (initiation, promotion, and progression) by modulating signal transduction pathways that control cell division and growth, apoptosis, inflammation, angiogenesis, and metastasis. The anticancer property of resveratrol has been supported by its ability to inhibit proliferation of a wide variety of human tumor cells in vitro. These in vitro data have led to numerous preclinical animal studies to evaluate the potential of this drug for cancer chemoprevention and chemotherapy. This review provides concise, comprehensive data from preclinical in vivo studies in various rodent models of human cancers, highlighting the related mechanisms of action. Bioavailability, pharmacokinetic, and potential toxicity studies of resveratrol in humans and ongoing interventional clinical trials are also presented. The conclusion describes directions for future resveratrol research to establish its activity and utility as a human cancer preventive and therapeutic drug.
- in vivo
- clinical trials
Grant support: Research Incentive Grant from the Ohio Board of Regents, State of Ohio.
Note: The author sincerely apologizes for not discussing and citing numerous important publications because of the limitation of space and of the number of references. This review is dedicated to the memory of Amiya K. Bishayee.
- Received August 8, 2008.
- Revision received November 20, 2008.
- Accepted January 16, 2009.
- ©2009 American Association for Cancer Research.