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Background and Objectives:Recent studies have demonstrated overexpression of cycloxygenase-2 (COX-2) in various can-cers including head and neck cancers. COX-2, an inducible enzyme which catalyzes the formation of prostaglandins from arachidonic acid, is expressed in some cancers. We investigated the anti-tumor effect of selective COX-2 inhibitor, Meloxicam, on Materials and Method:We inoculated the oral cavity cancer cell (KB cell) line subcutaneously into 30 athymic mice which were divided into 3 groups 1 wek after inoculation. One group received no treatment whereas two other groups received selective COX-2 inhibitor, Meloxicam, 10mg/kg and 40mg/kg three times wekly for 3 weks. We studied mean tumor volume, apoptotic index (TUNEL) and proliferative index (Ki 67) in the control and treated groups. Results:(p<0.01), and suppressed the xenografted tumor growth with significant diference (p<0.05) in the Meloxicam treated group. Al tumor expresed COX-2. Conclusion:This result suggested that the selective COX-2 inhibitors suppresed the growth of human oral cavity squamous carcinoma and a further study will be needed for determination of the pharmacologic pathway and eficacy of selective COX-2 inhibitor for head and neck cancers. (Korean J Otolaryngol 2003 ;46 :313-7)