Estrogen Metabolism and Risk of Postmenopausal Endometrial and Ovarian Cancer: the B ∼ FIT Cohort.Horm Cancer. 2016 Feb; 7(1):49-64.HC
Estrogen metabolites may have different genotoxic and mitogenic properties yet their relationship with endometrial and ovarian cancer risk remains unclear. Within the Breast and Bone Follow-up to the Fracture Intervention Trial (B ∼ FIT, n = 15,595), we conducted a case-cohort study to evaluate 15 pre-diagnostic serum estrogens and estrogen metabolites with risk of incident endometrial and ovarian cancer among postmenopausal women not on hormone therapy. Participants included 66 endometrial and 67 ovarian cancer cases diagnosed during follow-up (∼ 10 years) and subcohorts of 346 and 416 women, respectively, after relevant exclusions. Serum concentrations were measured by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. Hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were estimated using Cox proportional hazard regression. Exposures were categorized in tertiles (T) and analyzed individually, as metabolic pathways (C-2, -4, or -16) and as ratios to parent estrogens (estradiol, estrone). Estradiol was significantly associated with increased endometrial cancer risk (BMI-adjusted HRT3vsT1 = 4.09, 95% CI 1.70, 9.85; p trend = 0.003). 2-Hydroxyestrone and 16α-hydroxyestrone were not associated with endometrial risk after estradiol adjustment (2-OHE1:HRT3vsT1 = 1.97, 95% CI 0.78, 4.94; 16-OHE1:HRT3vsT1 = 1.50, 95% CI 0.65, 3.46; p trend = 0.16 and 0.36, respectively). Ratios of 2- and 4-pathway catechol-to-methylated estrogens remained positively associated with endometrial cancer after BMI or estradiol adjustment (2-pathway catechols-to-methylated: HRT3vsT1 = 4.02, 95% CI 1.60, 10.1; 4-pathway catechols-to-methylated: HRT3vsT1 = 4.59, 95% CI 1.64, 12.9; p trend = 0.002 for both). Estrogens and estrogen metabolites were not associated with ovarian cancer risk; however, larger studies are needed to better evaluate these relationships. Estrogen metabolism may be important in endometrial carcinogenesis, particularly with less extensive methylation of 2- or 4-pathway catechols associated with elevated endometrial cancer risk.