Green tea: A promising anticancer agent for renal cell carcinoma
Author: Márcia Carvalho and Carmen Jerónimo and Patrícia Valentão and Paula B. Andrade and Branca M. Silva
Renal cell carcinoma (RCC) is one of the most lethal amongst the urologic malignancies, comprising three percent of all human neoplasms, and its incidence appears to be rising. RCC is refractory to both chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Therefore, the discovery of new strategies for therapeutic intervention remains a priority. Green tea (Camellia sinensis) and tea polyphenols have been proposed to exert protective effects against several types of cancer, based on preclinical and clinical trial data; however, the anticarcinogenic activity of green tea towards RCC is unknown. In this study, a targeted metabolite analysis on a green tea leaves methanolic extract was performed by HPLC/DAD and the antiproliferative activity of the extract was assayed using human renal cancer cell lines A-498 and 769-P. The total phenolic content was very high (31.8% of methanolic extract), and the main compounds were flavan-3-ols (94.3% of the total phenolic content), and especially (−)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate (35.9% of the total phenolic content). In addition, two methylxanthines – theophylline and caffeine – were also present in the extract, caffeine being the most abundant. Green tea extract strongly inhibited the growth of both RCC cell lines in a concentration-dependent manner, with IC50 values of 54 ± 10 and 129 ± 28 μg/ml for A-498 and 769-P cells, respectively. This is the first report showing that green tea is likely to be an effective anticancer agent for renal cell carcinoma.