The citrus flavonoid, nobiletin, inhibits peritoneal dissemination of human gastric carcinoma in SCID mice

Akiko Minagawa, Yoshihide Otani, Tetsuro Kubota, Norihito Wada, Toshiharu Furukawa, Koichiro Kumai, Kaori Kameyama, Yasunori Okada, Masato Fujii, Masamichi Yano, Takashi Sato, Akira Ito, Masaki Kitajima

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

75 Citations (Scopus)


The flavonoid nobiletin (5,6,7,8,3′,4′-hexamethoxyflavone), found in Citrus depressa Rutaceae, a popular citrus fruit in Okinawa, Japan, reportedly inhibits the production of pro-matrix metalloproteinase (proMMP)-1, 3, and 9 in rabbit synovial fibroblasts in vitro. In the present study, we demonstrated the inhibitory effects of nobiletin on the proliferation of the cancer cell line, TMK-1, and its production of MMPs. In the SCID mouse model, we found that nobiletin inhibited the formation of peritoneal dissemination nodules from TMK-1. The enzymatic activity of MMP-9 expressed in culture medium obtained from a co-culture of TMK-1 and mouse fibroblastic cells was inhibited by nobiletin in a concentration-dependent manner. In the SCID mouse model, total weight of dissemination nodules was significantly lower in the treated group compared with the vehicle control group (0.07 g vs. 0.78 g, P=0.0059). The total number of dissemination nodules was also significantly lower than in the vehicle control group (7.5 vs. 69.3/body, P=0.0001). These results suggest that nobiletin may be a candidate anti-metastatic drug for prevention of peritoneal dissemination of gastric cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1322-1328
Number of pages7
JournalJapanese Journal of Cancer Research
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Flavonoid
  • Gastric cancer
  • Nobiletin
  • Peritoneal dissemination
  • matrix metalloproteinase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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