Prospective study of carotenoids, tocopherols, and retinoid concentrations and the risk of breast cancer.
Previous prospective studies have raised the possibility that the antioxidantproperties of carotenoids and vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol) and the role of vitamin A (retinol) in cellular differentiation may be associated with a reduced risk of subsequent breast cancer. To investigate the association between serum and plasma concentrations of retinol, retinyl palmitate, alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, beta-cryptoxanthin, lutein, lycopene, total-carotenoids, alpha-tocopherol, and gamma-tocopherol with subsequent development of breast cancer, a nested case control study was conducted among female residents of Washington County, Maryland, who had donated blood for a serum bank in 1974 or 1989. Cases (n = 295) and controls (n = 295) were matched on age, race, menopausal status, and date of blood donation, and the analyses were stratified by cohort participation. Median concentrations of beta-carotene, lycopene, and total carotene were significantly lower in cases compared with controls in the 1974 cohort (13.1, 12.5, and 7.9% difference; P = 0.01, 0.04, and 0.04, respectively) and for lutein in the 1989 cohort (6.7% difference; P = 0.02). The risk of developing breast cancer in the highest fifth was approximately half of that of women in the lowest fifth for beta-carotene [odds ratio (OR) = 0.41; 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.22-0.79; P trend = 0.007], lycopene (OR = 0.55; 95% CI 0.29-1.06; P trend = 0.04), and total carotene (OR = 0.55; 95% CI 0.29-1.03; P trend = 0.02) in the 1974 cohort. There was generally a protective association for other micronutrients in both cohorts, although none reached statistical significance. The results suggest that carotenoids may protect against the development of breast cancer.
Department of Epidemiology, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland 21205, USA., , , ,
Surveys and Questionnaires
Pub Type(s)Comparative Study
Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.