Melatonin as a potential inhibitor of colorectal cancer: Molecular mechanisms

Rana Shafabakhsh, Russel J. Reiter, Abdoulhossein Davoodabadi, Zatollah Asemi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Colorectal cancer (CRC) is a prevalent disease and a major cause of mortality in the world. Several factors including population aging, poor dietary habits, obesity, insufficient physical activity, and smoking can explain its increased prevalence. CRC is a heterogeneous disease both histopathologically and in term of its molecular and genetic aspects. Melatonin a derivative of tryptophan, is synthesized and released from pineal gland but it is also found in numerous extrapineal tissues including retina, testes, lymphocytes, Harderian gland, gastrointestinal tract, etc. This molecule has several tasks which enhance physiological functions such as antioxidant, antiaging, immunomodulatory, and tumor inhibition. Multiple immunocytochemical studies reported melatonin in the intestinal mucosa where its concentration is greater than in the blood. These findings suggest that melatonin may have a potential inhibitory role in CRC progression. The purpose of this review is to examine the effects of melatonin in molecular pathogenesis and signaling pathways of CRC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)12216-12223
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Cellular Biochemistry
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2019


  • colorectal cancer
  • modification
  • pathogenesis
  • signaling pathways

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Melatonin as a potential inhibitor of colorectal cancer: Molecular mechanisms'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this