Current Strategies of Cancer Chemoprevention,
13th International Symposium on Cancer.
July 6-9, 1993,  Sapporo, Japan, 1993. (1993):10

Chemoprevention of carcinogenesis by minor non-nutrient constituents of the diet (Meeting abstract). Wattenberg LW
Dept. of Lab. Medicine and Pathology Univ. of Minnesota Minneapolis  MN 55455-0315

The occurrence of cancer can be prevented by a surprisingly large  number of chemical compounds. This type of prevention is referred to as ‘chemoprevention.’ Epidemiological studies have shown that diets containing large quantities of vegetables and, to a lesser extent,  fruits are associated with relatively low risks from cancer. The  assignment of which constituents of these foods of plant origin are  responsible for protection has been indecisive. In the search for inhibitory compounds, one group that is currently under investigation  are minor non-nutrient constituents of the diet. Examples of such compounds are terpenes, aromatic isothiocyanates, organosulfur compounds, protease inhibitors, monophenols, flavonoids, tannins, other polyphenols, and inositols. The non-nutrient inhibitors of carcinogenesis have several different mechanisms of action which will be discussed. Some are blocking agents, ie, they prevent carcinogens from reaching or  reacting with critical target sites. Others are suppressing agents, ie, they prevent evolution of the neoplastic process in cells which otherwise would become malignant. In occasional instances, the same  compound will show both mechanisms. As studies of the inhibitory capacities of dietary non-nutrients continue, a clearer picture of their potential impact in cancer prevention is emerging.

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