Green tea polyphenols (GTPs) show promise as anticarcinogenic agents and may prevent the development of solar UV radiation-induced skin cancer. Here we investigated the mechanisms by which GTPs prevent UVB-induced skin cancer in mice. Two groups of 6- to 7-wk-old female SKH-1 hairless mice were UVB irradiated (180 mJ/cm2) 3 times each week for 24 wk. One group consumed water and the other, water containing 2 g/L GTPs. A control group drank water and was not exposed to UVB radiation. UVB-induced tumors and skin biopsies from the control group were analyzed using immunostaining, Western blotting, and gelatinolytic zymography. Oral administration of GTPs reduced UVB-induced tumor incidence (35%), tumor multiplicity (63%), and tumor growth (55%). The GTPs+UVB group had reduced expression of the matrix metalloproteinases (MMP)-2 and MMP-9, which have crucial roles in tumor growth and metastasis, and enhanced expression of tissue inhibitor of MMP in the tumors compared with mice that were treated with UVB alone. The GTPs+UVB group also had reduced expressions of CD31 and vascular endothelial growth factor, which are essential for angiogenesis, and inhibited expression of proliferating cell nuclear antigen in the tumors compared with the UVB group. Additionally, there were more cytotoxic CD8+ T cells in the tumors of the GTPs+UVB group than in the UVB group and their tumor cells exhibited greater activation of caspase-3, indicating the apoptotic death of the tumor cells. Taken together, these data suggest that in mice, administration of GTPs affects several biomarkers that are involved in UV-carcinogenesis, including inhibition of angiogenic factors and recruitment of cytotoxic T cells in the tumor microenvironment. © 2005 American Society for Nutrition.