Among the major components of green tea, epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) is the most
effective for its anti-cancer characteristics. The bulk of studies provide the mechanisms of suppressive
function of EGCG are involved in alteration of cancer cell cycle, development, and apoptosis through
activation/inhibition of several signal pathways.
Another mechanism that explains the multiple effects exerted by EGCG in cancer is the epigenetic
change by DNA methylation or methyltransferases, histone acetylation or deacetylases, and no coding
RNAs (micoRNAs). Furthermore, decontrolled expression of miRNA transcription has been tested to
be directly regulated by oncogenic and tumor-suppressor transcription factors. Recently, several proteins
have been identified as miRNA direct interactors by EGCG. However, the mechanisms explaining
the action of miRNA being modulated by EGCG have not been completely understood yet. This
review summarizes the state of epigenetic change being modulated by EGCG in a variety of cancers
and oncogenic and tumor-suppressor transcription factors.