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Journal of Oncology
Volume 2012, Article ID 803294, 8 pages
Review Article

Potential Anticancer Properties of Grape Antioxidants

1Department of Nutrition and Food Science, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI 48202, USA
2Department of Medicine, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA

Received 25 May 2012; Accepted 10 July 2012

Academic Editor: Gilda G. Hillman

Copyright © 2012 Kequan Zhou and Julian J. Raffoul. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Dietary intake of foods rich in antioxidant properties is suggested to be cancer protective. Foods rich in antioxidant properties include grape (Vitis vinifera), one of the world’s largest fruit crops and most commonly consumed fruits in the world. The composition and cancer-protective effects of major phenolic antioxidants in grape skin and seed extracts are discussed in this review. Grape skin and seed extracts exert strong free radical scavenging and chelating activities and inhibit lipid oxidation in various food and cell models in vitro. The use of grape antioxidants are promising against a broad range of cancer cells by targeting epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and its downstream pathways, inhibiting over-expression of COX-2 and prostaglandin E2 receptors, or modifying estrogen receptor pathways, resulting in cell cycle arrest and apoptosis. Interestingly, some of these activities were also demonstrated in animal models. However, in vivo studies have demonstrated inconsistent antioxidant efficacy. Nonetheless, a growing body of evidence from human clinical trials has demonstrated that consumption of grape, wine and grape juice exerts many health-promoting and possible anti-cancer effects. Thus, grape skin and seed extracts have great potential in cancer prevention and further investigation into this exciting field is warranted.