Affiliation: Department of Pathology, Northwestern University, 303 E Chicago Ave, Ward building 3-140, Chicago, IL 60611, USA.
Natural products are important sources of anti-cancer lead molecules, and high dietary consumption of fruits and vegetables is associated with a reduced risk of certain cancers. Many efforts have been devoted to identifying and developing plant-derived dietary constituents as chemopreventive agents. Among them, apigenin, a naturally occurring flavonoid found in a variety of fruits and leafy vegetables, has been shown to possess remarkable anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-carcinogenic properties. This review summarizes the anti-cancer and chemopreventive effects of apigenin at cellular and molecular levels, its chemical structure and properties, with focus on mechanism related to apigenin’s inhibition of the PI3K/Akt/mTOR signaling pathways.