Tea, next to water, is the most widely consumed beverage in the world. Depending upon the level of fermentation, tea can be categorized into three types: green (unfermented), oolong (partially fermented), and black (highly to fully fermented). In general, green tea has been found to be superior to black and oolong tea in terms of antioxidant and health promoting benefits owing to the higher content of (-)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate. Tea polyphenols comprise about one-third of the weight of the dried leaf, and they exhibit biochemical and pharmacological activities including antioxidant activities, inhibition of cell proliferation, induction of apoptosis, cell cycle arrest and modulation of carcinogen metabolism. Several studies demonstrate that most tea polyphenols exert their effects by scavenging reactive oxygen species (ROS) since excessive production of ROS has been implicated in the development of a variety of ailments including cancer of the prostate gland (CaP). Using cell culture and animal model systems, molecular targets for these remarkable beneficial effects of green tea drinking on CaP prevention and therapy have been defined. Geographical and case-control studies are showing that green tea drinking could afford CaP chemopreventive effects in human population. In this review we attempt to summarize the experimental as well as the epidemiological basis for the possible role of tea and its polyphenols for chemoprevention and chemotherapy of CaP.
- Green tea polyphenols
- Prostate cancer