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Carcinogenesis. 2000 Mar;21(3):525-30.

Chemoprevention of cancer.

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  • 1Department of Pharmacology, Dartmouth Medical School, Hanover, NH 03755, USA.


In this short article, we review the conceptual basis for chemoprevention of cancer, the proven clinical efficacy of this concept, and current trends to develop new chemopreventive agents based on understanding of their mechanisms of action. Four classes of new agents, namely selective inhibitors of cyclooxygenase-2, selective estrogen receptor modulators, rexinoids (retinoids that bind selectively to the receptors known as RXRs) and ligands for the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma are discussed in detail. The importance of developing totally new classes of chemopreventive agents is stressed, with particular emphasis on the potential usefulness of new synthetic triterpenoids derived from naturally occurring molecules.

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