To provide information on the relation between intake of carotenoids and retinol and endometrial cancer, since available data are inconsistent. Further, carotenoids other than beta-carotene have been rarely investigated.
We conducted a multi-centric case-control study in various areas of Italy between 1992 and 2006 on 454 women with incident, histologically confirmed endometrial cancer and 908 controls admitted to the same network of hospitals of cases for acute, non-neoplastic conditions. Intake of carotenoids and retinol was computed from a validated and reproducible food frequency questionnaire. We adjusted for selected covariates, including energy intake, and calculated multivariate odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) using conditional logistic regression.
Comparing the highest to the lowest quartile of intake, the ORs of endometrial cancer were 0.69 (95% CI, 0.48-0.99) for beta-carotene, 0.65 (95% CI, 0.45-0.94) for beta-cryptoxanthin, and 0.59 (95% CI, 0.41-0.85) for lutein plus zeaxanthin intake. No association emerged with retinol (OR = 1.31, 95% CI, 0.94-1.84), alpha-carotene (OR = 0.94, 95% CI, 0.66-1.34), and lycopene (OR = 0.95, 95% CI, 0.68-1.34).
Our results support a favorable role of selected dietary carotenoids on endometrial cancer risk.