Phytochemicals and Naturally Occurring Substances in the Chemoprevention of Skin Cancer

S. Higgins, K. A. Miller, K. Y. Wojcik, O. Ahadiat, L. A. Escobedo, A. Wysong, M. Cockburn

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Purpose of Review: Non-melanoma skin cancer outnumbers all other cancers combined by three to four-fold while melanoma is the fifth most common cancer overall, and the deadliest form of skin cancer. Despite treatment advancements in the past several decades, incidence continues to rise. Phytochemicals and other naturally occurring substances may provide sustainable chemopreventive solutions. The purpose of this study is to review the key findings from the literature and report on the level of evidence based on study design. Recent Findings: A comprehensive PubMed search was completed from 1984 to present using keywords “skin cancer chemoprevention” alone and with “phytochemicals,” “alternative,” “essential oils,” and “vitamins.” This search demonstrated that the literature strongly endorses the role of naturally occurring substances in the context of skin cancer chemoprevention, however the literature is predominantly comprised of data based on in vitro and animal based models. Summary: Prior to acceptance into mainstream practice, high quality prospective studies to evaluate the role of naturally occurring compounds in the context of skin cancer chemoprevention are indicated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)196-203
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent Dermatology Reports
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Chemoprevention
  • Essential oils
  • Melanoma
  • Nicotinamide
  • Non-melanoma skin cancer
  • Phytochemicals

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology


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