Anticancer natural compounds as epigenetic modulators of gene expression

Edward A. Ratovitski

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


Accumulating evidence shows that hallmarks of cancer include: “genetic and epigenetic alterations leading to inactivation of cancer suppressors, overexpression of oncogenes, deregulation of intracellular signaling cascades, alterations of cancer cell metabolism, failure to undergo cancer cell death, induction of epithelial to mesenchymal transition, invasiveness, metastasis, deregulation of immune response and changes in cancer microenvironment, which underpin cancer development”. Natural compounds as bioactive ingredients isolated from natural sources (plants, fungi, marine life forms) have revolutionized the field of anticancer therapeutics and rapid developments in preclinical studies are encouraging. Natural compounds could affect the epigenetic molecular mechanisms that modulate gene expression, as well as DNA damage and repair mechanisms. The current review will describe the latest achievements in using naturally produced compounds targeting epigenetic regulators and modulators of gene transcription in vitro and in vivo to generate novel anticancer therapeutics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)175-205
Number of pages31
JournalCurrent Genomics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2017


  • Chromatin
  • DNA methylation
  • Epigenetics
  • Histone acetylation
  • Histone methylation
  • MicroRNA
  • Natural compounds
  • Tumorigenesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Genetics(clinical)


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