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Biochim Biophys Acta. 2006 Jan;1765(1):14-24. Epub 2005 Sep 7.

beta-Catenin-mediated signaling: a novel molecular target for chemoprevention with anti-inflammatory substances.

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  • 1National Research Laboratory of Molecular Carcinogenesis and Chemoprevention, College of Pharmacy, Seoul National University, Shinlim-dong, Kwanak-ku, Seoul 151-742, South Korea.


Inflammation is thought to play a role in the pathophysiology of cancer. Accumulating evidence from clinical and laboratory-based studies suggests that substances with anti-inflammatory activities are potential candidates for chemoprevention. Recent advances in cellular and molecular biology of cancer shed light on components of intracellular signaling cascades that can be potential molecular targets of chemoprevention with various anti-inflammatory substances. Although cyclooxygenase-2, a primary enzyme that mediates inflammatory responses, has been well recognized as a molecular target for chemoprevention by both synthetic and natural anti-inflammatory agents, the cellular signaling mechanisms that associate inflammation and cancer are not still clearly illustrated. Recent studies suggest that beta-catenin-mediated signaling, which regulates developmental processes, may act as a potential link between inflammation and cancer. This review aims to focus on beta-catenin-mediated signaling pathways, particularly in relation to its contribution to carcinogenesis, and the modulation of inappropriately activated beta-catenin-mediated signaling by nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and chemopreventive phytochemicals possessing anti-inflammatory properties.

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