Green tea was prepared by extracting 12.5 g of green tea leaves twice with 500 ml of boiling water, and the extracts were combined. This 1.25% green tea extract (1.25 g of tea leaves/100 ml of water) contained 4.69 mg of green tea extract solids per ml and was similar in composition to some green tea beverages consumed by humans. A 2.5% green tea extract (2.5 g of tea leaves/100 ml of water) was prepared similarly. Treatment of female SKH-1 mice with 180 mJ/cm2 of ultraviolet B light (UVB) once daily for 7 days resulted in red sunburn lesions of the skin. The intensity of red color and area of these lesions were inhibited in a dose-dependent fashion by the administration of 1.25 or 2.5% green tea extract as the sole source of drinking water before and during UVB treatment. Treatment of female SKH-1 mice with 180 mJ/cm2 of UVB once daily for 10 days followed 1 wk later by twice weekly application of 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate for 25 wk resulted in the development of skin tumors. The formation of skin tumors was inhibited by administration of 1.25% green tea extract as the sole source of drinking water prior to and during the 10 days of UVB treatment and for 1 wk after UVB treatment. In additional experiments, female SKH-1 mice were treated with 200 nmol of 7,12-dimethylbenz(a)anthracene followed 3 wk later by irradiation with 180, 60, or 30 mJ/cm2 of UVB twice weekly for 30 wk. UVB-induced formation of skin tumors and increased spleen size were inhibited by administration of 1.25% green tea extract as the sole source of drinking water prior to and during the 30 wk of UVB treatment. In these experiments, treatment of the animals with the green tea extract not only decreased the number of skin tumors but also decreased substantially the size of the tumors. In additional studies, SKH-1 mice were initiated by topical application of 200 nmol of 7,12-dimethyl-benz(a)anthracene followed by twice weekly application of 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate for 25 wk. Administration of 1.25% green tea extract as the sole source of drinking water during promotion with 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate reduced the number and incidence of skin tumors.
Supported by Grant CA49756 from the NIH.