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To investigate oral carcinogenesis in hamster induced by the topical application of 7,12-dimethyl benzanthracene (DMBA) to evaluate the different lesions produced and the possible preventive effects of the phenolic compounds apigenin (flavone) and carnosic acid (diterpene).Thirty-two Syrian hamsters were divided into three groups: I: 0.5% DMBA (n= 12); II: 0.5% DMBA + potassium apigenin (n= 8); III: 0.5% DMBA + carnosic acid (n= 12). All the animals were sacrificed after 11 weeks, and a macroscopic and light microscopic study was made of the lesions.The largest number of neoplasms, showing the most aggressive biological behavior, corresponded to the control group. The group treated with potassium apigenin ranked second in tumor incidence, although the tumors were not very aggressive behavior. In the group treated with carnosic acid, only one malignancy was recorded, showing the smallest volume of all the recorded tumor lesions.Our findings indicate that both potassium apigenin and carnosic acid have chemoprotective effects against carcinogenesis induced by DMBA in hamster.