An immunological perspective for preventing cancer with berries

Pan Pan, Yi Wen Huang, Kiyoko Oshima, Martha Yearsley, Jianying Zhang, Jianhua Yu, Mark Arnold, Li Shu Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Berries and their phytochemicals have well documented chemopreventive roles, but understanding their ability to regulate cancer immunology is only beginning to be explored. The literature, including human studies, suggests that berry components can modulate our immune system to delay cancer development. Moreover, their wide spectrum of phytochemicals suggests that they might influence the functions of multiple immune cells and different aspects of cancer immunity. Cancer immune-therapies are showing promise for some types of cancer because they boost T cells' ability to recognize tumor cells - an essential prelude to destruction. Recognition occurs after dendritic cells present antigen, such as tumor antigen, to T cells, generating an adaptive response. Therefore, the potential of berries to aid cancer immune-therapies by, for example, regulating dendritic cells, warrants further investigation in animal and human studies. More information is also needed about berries' effects on the entire spectrum of immunity so that a comprehensive view can inform efforts to use berries to enhance immune responses during cancer prevention and treatment. This review summarizes the effects of berries as anti-tumor agents from the immunological perspective in tumor-bearing animals and humans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)163-175
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Berry Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2018


  • Cancer immunology
  • T cells
  • berries
  • dendritic cells
  • natural killer cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Biochemistry
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Soil Science
  • Plant Science
  • Horticulture


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