Flavonoids, immunity and cancer: from in vitro experiments to clinical trials

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Numerous experimental studies of flavonoids as plant secondary metabolites have revealed their various benefits to human health. These polyphenolic compounds are able to prevent initiation and development of cancer through acting on several molecular targets and influencing different signalling pathways, including those involved in modulation of immune response and inflammatory reactions. This review article gives a survey about flavonoids, their structural and functional diversities and major immunomodulatory activities, but brings forth also the bottlenecks in translating preclinical effects to cancer prevention or therapy in humans. It can be expected that growing interest among general public in the use of flavonoids and food products rich in flavonoids, accompanying with ongoing efforts of scientific community to overcome the current barriers in application of these promising compounds, will further proovide new opportunities for cancer prevention, as well as will expand our current drug arsenal in the fight against malignant disorders.