A Review on Melatonin's Effects in Cancer: Potential Mechanisms

Hanikoglu A., Kucuksayan E., Akduman R. C. , ÖZBEN TOMASİ T.

ANTI-CANCER AGENTS IN MEDICINAL CHEMISTRY, vol.18, no.7, pp.985-992, 2018 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Review
  • Volume: 18 Issue: 7
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.2174/1871520617666171121120223
  • Page Numbers: pp.985-992


This systematic review aims to elucidate the role of melatonin (N-acetyl-5-metoxy-tryptamine) (MLT) in the prevention and treatment of cancer. MLT is a pineal gland secretory product, an evolutionarily highly conserved molecule; it is also an antioxidant and an impressive protector of mitochondrial bioenergetic activity. MLT is characterized by an ample range of activities, modulating the physiology and molecular biology of the cell. Its physiological functions relate principally to the interaction of G Protein-Coupled MT1 and MT2 trans-membrane receptors (GPCRs), a family of guanidine triphosphate binding proteins. MLT has been demonstrated to suppress the growth of various tumours both, in vivo and in vitro. In this review, we analyze in depth, the antioxidant activity of melatonin, aiming to illustrate the cancer treatment potential of the molecule, by limiting or reversing the changes occurring during cancer development and growth.