Current issues of selenium in cancer chemoprevention

Hwa Jin Jung, Young R. Seo

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


The element selenium (Se) was identified, nearly 40 years ago, as being essential in the nutrition of animals and humans. In addition, antitumorigenic effects of Se compounds have been described in a variety of in vitro and animal models, suggesting that supplemental Se in human diets may reduce cancer risk. Apparent mechanisms underlying the potential of Se compounds as cancer chemopreventive agents have been suggested. Some recent clinical trials, however, have shed doubt on the anticancer effects of Se. The contradictory findings and consequent controversy might be due to the lack of understanding of the mechanisms underlying Se biology. This article reviews current knowledge on this topic and addresses the disparate viewpoints on the chemopreventive effects of Se, the human populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)153-158
Number of pages6
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Chemopreventive effects
  • Mechanistic selenium biology
  • Selenium

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Clinical Biochemistry


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