An alcoholic precipitate of noni juice significantly prolonged the life of mice with implanted tumors (Furusawa et al 2003, Hirazumi et al 1994). It is suggested that this antitumour activity is due to immunostimulatory activity, because the noni precipitate was not directly cytotoxic to tumour cells, but did activate immune cells in vitro with its activity reduced by immunosuppressant drugs (Furusawa et al 2003, Hirazumi et al 1996). Noni juice has also been observed to increase the wet weight of thymus tissue in animals (Wang et al 2002) and protect against DMBA-induced DNAadduct formation in rats (Wang & Su 2001).

Noni also improved survival times in cancer-implanted mice when combined with suboptimal doses of standard chemotherapeutic agents (Hirazumi & Furusawa 1999) and this is supported by in vitro studies demonstrating synergistic effects with chemotherapeutic agents (Furusawa et al 2003, Wang et al 2002).

In vitro studies have also found that noni fruit has antiproliferative activity against SKBR3 human breast adenocarcinoma cells (Moongkarndi et al 2004), and that glycosides extracted from noni inhibit cell transformation (Liu et al 2001) and UVB-induced activator protein-1 activity (Sang et al 2001, 2003). The anthraquinone, damnacanthal, is reported to stimulate UV-induced apoptosis in vitro (Hiwasa et al 1999).

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