Alcohol Consumption in Relation to Breast Cancer Risk in a Cohort of United States Women 25–42 Years of Age

Department of Nutrition, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.
Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers & Prevention (Impact Factor: 4.13). 12/1999; 8(11):1017-21.
Source: PubMed


We evaluated current and past alcohol consumption prospectively in relation to breast cancer risk among 116,671 women ages 25-42 years old at enrollment in 1989. During 6 years of follow-up, 445 cases of invasive breast cancer were identified. For alcohol consumption in the previous year, the multivariate relative risk associated with more than 20 g/day (approximately 10 drinks/week) was 1.23 (95% confidence interval, 0.68-2.21); the P for trend was 0.85. For average lifetime alcohol consumption, the multivariate relative risk associated with consumption of 10 or more drinks/week was 1.20 (95% confidence interval, 0.69-2.11); the P for trend was 0.18. We examined drinking in several time periods of life; only drinking at ages 23-30 was significantly positively associated with risk. Although this may represent a chance finding, it merits further study. Because drinking levels in this population were low, we had limited information on heavier drinking. Our results suggest that there is unlikely to be a large effect of moderate alcohol consumption on breast cancer risk among young women, although a modest effect cannot be excluded. The association between alcohol consumption and breast cancer is unlikely to be substantially stronger among premenopausal women than among postmenopausal women.

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    • "Alcohol consumption of 15 g/day or more at age 18e22 years, but not at 15e17 years, was associated with significant increased risk for benign breast disease [55]. In the NHS I and II cohorts, high alcohol consumption during adolescence was associated with a nonsignificant increased risk for adult breast cancer [30] [56]. To date, results from case-control studies of adolescent alcohol consumption and breast cancer risk have been inconsistent [57e60]. "
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    ABSTRACT: It is increasingly evident that diet during preadolescence and adolescence has important consequences for breast cancer during adulthood. However, only a few epidemiologic studies have been conducted on the relationship between diet during preadolescence and adolescence, and cancer during adulthood. This situation is partly because of methodological challenges such as the long latency period, the complexity of breast cancer, the lack of validated diet assessment tools, and the large number of subjects that must be followed, all of which increase costs. In addition, funding opportunities are few for such studies. Results from the small number of epidemiologic studies are inconsistent, but evidence is emerging that specific aspects of the diet during preadolescence and adolescence are important. For example, during preadolescence and adolescence, severe calorie restriction with poor food quality, high total fat intake, and alcohol intake tend to increase risk, whereas high soy intake decreases risk. Research on preadolescent and adolescent diet is a paradigm shift in breast cancer investigations. This research paradigm has the potential to produce transformative knowledge to inform breast cancer prevention strategies through dietary intervention during preadolescence and adolescence, rather than later in life, as is current practice, when it is perhaps less effective. Methodological challenges that have plagued the field might now be overcome by leveraging several existing large-scale cohort studies in the U.S. and around the world to investigate the role of diet during preadolescence and adolescence in risk for adult breast cancer.
    Journal of Adolescent Health 11/2012; 52(5). DOI:10.1016/j.jadohealth.2012.08.008 · 3.61 Impact Factor
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    • "Despite extensive investigation of the association between alcohol consumption and breast cancer risk, the conclusion remains controversial especially for low-to-moderate alcohol intake (Brown et al, 2010). Some studies reported that alcohol consumption was associated with a higher risk of incident breast cancer (Smith- Warner et al, 1998; Bagnardi et al, 2001; Terry et al, 2006), while others based on more detailed consumption measures have found no relationship with breast cancer, particularly in premenopausal women (Garland et al, 1999; Kinney et al, 2000; Kropp et al, 2001; Baumgartner et al, 2002; Nagata et al, 2007; Bessaoud and Daurès, 2008; Brown et al, 2010; Kabat et al, 2010). This study was specifically designed to examine associations between low-tomoderate intake of alcohol and the risk of breast cancer by menopause status in the women and ER and PR status in the breast tumours. "
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    ABSTRACT: Despite extensive investigation of the association between alcohol consumption and breast cancer risk, effect of low-to-moderate alcohol intake on breast cancer incidence has been inconsistent. A case-control study was conducted in China, 2004-2005 to examine the association by menopausal status, oestrogen (ER) and progesterone receptor (PR) status of the tumour. There were 1009 incident cases with histologically confirmed breast cancer and 1009 age-matched controls recruited. We assessed alcohol consumption by face-to-face interview using a validated questionnaire and obtained tumour ER and PR status from pathology reports. Low-to-moderate alcohol consumption was inversely associated with breast cancer risk. Compared with nondrinkers, the adjusted odds ratios (ORs) for alcohol <5 g per day were 0.41 (95% confidence interval 0.27-0.62) and 0.62 (0.48-0.79) in postmenopausal and premenopausal women, respectively. The inverse association was consistent for alcohol <15 g per day across hormone receptor status groups with ORs of 0.36-0.56 in postmenopausal women and 0.57-0.64 in premenopausal women. An exception was that alcohol ≥15 g per day appeared to increase the risk of breast cancers with discordant receptor status in postmenopausal women, that is, ER+/PR- or ER-/PR+ (4.27, 1.57-11.65). We found that low-to-moderate alcohol intake was not associated with increased risk of breast cancer in pre- or postmenopausal Chinese women. Future studies are required to understand differences in effect of alcohol on breast cancers by tumour hormone receptor status.
    British Journal of Cancer 08/2011; 105(7):1089-95. DOI:10.1038/bjc.2011.302 · 4.84 Impact Factor
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    • "Alcohol has been consistently found to increase the risk of developing breast cancer (Singletary and Gapstur, 2001; Smith-Warner et al., 1998). Some epidemiological studies suggest that drinking alcohol during adolescence and early adulthood has a strong impact on breast cancer risk (Garland et al., 1999; Harvey et al., 1987; Hiatt et al., 1988; Young, 1989), as does drinking later in life (Longnecker et al., 1995; Swanson et al., 1997). Furthermore, it has been suggested that exposure to alcohol in utero through a pregnant mother may also increase the risk of developing breast cancer (Hilakivi- Clarke et al., 2004). "

    Alcoholism Clinical and Experimental Research 03/2011; 35(3):389-91. DOI:10.1111/j.1530-0277.2010.01355.x · 3.21 Impact Factor
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