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Concept: Epigallocatechin gallate


Numerous studies have demonstrated the importance of naturally occurring dietary polyphenols in promoting cardiovascular health and emphasized the significant role these compounds play in limiting the effects of cellular aging. Polyphenols such as resveratrol, epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), and curcumin have been acknowledged for having beneficial effects on cardiovascular health, while some have also been shown to be protective in aging. This review highlights the literature surrounding this topic on the prominently studied and documented polyphenols as pertaining to cardiovascular health and aging.

Concepts: Antioxidant, Catechin, Resveratrol, Polyphenol antioxidant, Play, Polyphenol, Epigallocatechin gallate


(-)-Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) is a major polyphenol component of green tea that has antioxidant activities. Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) induces inflammatory cytokine production and impairs blood-brain barrier (BBB) integrity. We examined the effect of EGCG on LPS-induced expression of the inflammatory cytokines in human cerebral microvascular endothelial cells (hCMECs) and BBB permeability.

Concepts: Inflammation, Cytokine, Antioxidant, Tea, Catechin, Green tea, Polyphenol, Epigallocatechin gallate


Osteopontin (OPN) promotes hepatic fibrosis, and developing therapies targeting OPN expression in settings of hepatic injury holds promise. The polyphenol epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), found in high concentrations in green tea, downregulates OPN expression through OPN mRNA degradation, but the mechanism is unknown. Previous work has shown that microRNAs can decrease OPN mRNA levels, and other studies have shown that EGCG modulates the expression of multiple microRNAs. In our study, we first demonstrated that OPN induces hepatic stellate cells to transform into an activated state. We then identified three microRNAs which target OPN mRNA: miR-181a, miR-10b, and miR-221. In vitro results show that EGCG upregulates all three microRNAs, and all three microRNAs are capable of down regulating OPN mRNA when administered alone. Interestingly, only miR-221 is necessary for EGCG-mediated OPN mRNA degradation and miR-221 inhibition reduces the effects of EGCG on cell function. In vivo experiments show that thioacetamide (TAA)-induced cell cytotoxicity upregulates OPN expression; treatment with EGCG blocks the effects of TAA. Furthermore, chronic treatment of EGCG in vivo upregulates all three microRNAs equally, suggesting that in more chronic treatment all three microRNAs are involved in modulating OPN expression. We conclude that in in vitro and in vivo models of TAA-induced hepatic fibrosis, EGCG inhibits OPN-dependent injury and fibrosis. EGCG works primarily by upregulating miR-221 to accelerate OPN degradation. EGCG may therefore have utility as a protective agent in settings of liver injury.

Concepts: Messenger RNA, In vivo, Enzyme inhibitor, In vitro, Inhibitor, Catechin, Green tea, Epigallocatechin gallate


Evidence continues to demonstrate the role of obesity in prostate carcinogenesis and prognosis, underscoring the need to identify and continue to evaluate the effective interventions to reduce obesity in populations at high risk. The aim of the study was to determine the effect of daily consumption of decaffeinated green tea catechins (GTC) formulation (Polyphenon E® (PolyE)) for 1 year on biomarkers of obesity in men who are at high risk for prostate cancer.

Concepts: Cancer, Obesity, Prostate cancer, Catechin, Camellia sinensis, Green tea, Epigallocatechin gallate, Green tea extract


PURPOSE: The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of 1 day and 7 days ingestion of a green tea extract (GTE) on whole body fat oxidation during moderate-intensity exercise. METHODS: Thirty one males completed two exercise trials (60 min cycle 50% Wmax). Following the baseline trial (Day 0) subjects were randomly assigned to one of three conditions involving a week supplementation of; 1) 7 days placebo (PLA); 2) 6 days of PLA followed by 1 day of GTE (GTE1); 3) 7 days of GTE ingestion (GTE7). The morning after the supplementation week, subjects consumed an additional supplement and completed a second exercise trial (Day 8). VO2 and VCO2 measurements were taken during exercise to calculate whole body fat oxidation rates. Blood samples, for analysis of plasma fatty acids (FAs), glycerol and epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), were collected at rest and during exercise. RESULTS: On Day 8 the plasma kinetics and maximal plasma concentrations of EGCG were similar in the GTE1 and GTE7 group (206 ± 28 and 216 ± 25 ng·mL-1 respectively). One day of GTE ingestion did not affect markers of lipolysis during the exercise bout. Seven days of GTE ingestion significantly increased plasma glycerol during exercise (P=0.045) and plasma FAs during exercise (P=0.020) as well as at rest (P= 0.046). However, fat oxidation did not change in any of the groups. CONCLUSIONS: There was no effect of 1 day GTE ingestion on markers of lipolysis or fat oxidation during exercise. Seven days of GTE ingestion increased lipolysis, indicated by increased plasma FA and glycerol concentrations, but did not result in significant changes in fat oxidation.

Concepts: Fatty acid, Triglyceride, Fat, Ester, Green tea, Glycerol, Epigallocatechin gallate, Green tea extract


Although previous literature has reported that regular green tea consumption may improve blood pressure, the evidence from these studies is not consistent. The present study systematically reviewed randomised controlled trials and examined the effect of green tea consumption on blood pressure using meta-analysis.

Concepts: Evidence-based medicine, Systematic review, Randomized controlled trial, Meta-analysis, Catechin, Camellia sinensis, Green tea, Epigallocatechin gallate


Aim: The therapeutic potential of epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), a green tea polyphenol with anticancer properties, is limited by its inability to specifically reach tumors following intravenous administration. The purpose of this study was to determine whether a tumor-targeted vesicular formulation of EGCG would suppress the growth of A431 epidermoid carcinoma and B16-F10 melanoma in vitro and in vivo. Materials & methods: Transferrin-bearing vesicles encapsulating EGCG were administered intravenously to mice bearing subcutaneous A431 and B16-F10 tumors. Results: The intravenous administration of EGCG encapsulated in transferrin-bearing vesicles resulted in tumor suppression in 40% of A431 and B16-F10 tumors. Animal survival was improved by more than 20 days compared with controls. Conclusion: Encapsulation of EGCG in transferrin-bearing vesicles is a promising therapeutic strategy. Original submitted 28 November 2011; Revised submitted 11 May 2012; Published online 14 August 2012.

Concepts: Cancer, Oncology, Intravenous therapy, Catechin, Green tea, Polyphenol, Epigallocatechin gallate, Theaflavin


Green tea catechins have been hypothesized to increase energy expenditure and fat oxidation by inhibiting catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) and thus promoting more sustained adrenergic stimulation. Metabolomics may help to clarify the mechanisms underlying their putative physiological effects.

Concepts: Metabolism, Adenosine triphosphate, Antioxidant, Catechin, Camellia sinensis, Green tea, Epigallocatechin gallate, Green tea extract


Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) is the major polyphenol in green tea (Camellia sinensis) and is known for its antioxidant effects. The objective of the present study was to examine the effects of EGCG during in vitro fertilization (IVF) on the sperm quality and penetrability into oocytes. In the first experiment, the effects of concentration and incubation period of EGCG on the motility and penetrability of spermatozoa were examined. When frozen-thawed spermatozoa were incubated in IVF medium supplemented with 0 (control), 1, 50 and 100 μm EGCG for 1, 3 and 5 h, supplementation with 50 and 100 μm EGCG improved motility of the spermatozoa (p < 0.05), but not viability, as compared with the control group. When frozen-thawed spermatozoa were co-incubated with in vitro-matured (IVM) oocytes in IVF medium supplemented with 50 and 100 μm EGCG for 5 h, supplementation of EGCG had positive effects on sperm penetration rates. In the second experiment, the effects of supplementation of EGCG in IVF medium on penetrability of sperm from different boars and development of fertilized oocytes were evaluated. When frozen-thawed spermatozoa from six boars were co-incubated with IVM oocytes in IVF medium supplemented with 50 μm EGCG, the effect of EGCG on sperm penetration and development of oocytes after fertilization was found to vary with individual boar. Our results indicate that motility and penetrability of boar spermatozoa are improved by co-incubation with 50 μm EGCG, but the effects vary with individual boars.

Concepts: Sperm, Fertility, Spermatozoon, In vitro fertilisation, Catechin, Green tea, Fertilisation, Epigallocatechin gallate


Tea leaves contain varying amounts of polyphenols of which the majority are catechins. There has been a sizable amount of research on the potential effect of green tea catechins for cancer risk, cardiovascular disease risk and weight loss; all conditions that are relevant to mid-life health. The aim was to produce an overview of the evidence for green tea for these three important health conditions.

Concepts: Medicine, Tea, Catechin, Camellia sinensis, Green tea, Tannin, Polyphenol, Epigallocatechin gallate