Accumulating evidence shows that hallmarks of cancer include: “genetic and epigenetic alterations
leading to inactivation of cancer suppressors, overexpression of oncogenes, deregulation of intracellular
signaling cascades, alterations of cancer cell metabolism, failure to undergo cancer cell death,
induction of epithelial to mesenchymal transition, invasiveness, metastasis, deregulation of immune response
and changes in cancer microenvironment, which underpin cancer development”. Natural compounds
as bioactive ingredients isolated from natural sources (plants, fungi, marine life forms) have
revolutionized the field of anticancer therapeutics and rapid developments in preclinical studies are encouraging.
Natural compounds could affect the epigenetic molecular mechanisms that modulate gene
expression, as well as DNA damage and repair mechanisms. The current review will describe the latest
achievements in using naturally produced compounds targeting epigenetic regulators and modulators of
gene transcription in vitro and in vivo to generate novel anticancer therapeutics.
Keywords: Chromatin, DNA methylation, Epigenetics, Histone acetylation, Histone methylation, microRNA, Natural compounds,
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