Dietary carotenoids and the risk of invasive breast cancer

Department of Epidemiology, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02115, USA.
International Journal of Cancer (Impact Factor: 5.01). 06/2009; 124(12):2929-37. DOI: 10.1002/ijc.24334
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Certain classes of vitamins and nutrients found in fruits and vegetables have been of particular interest in relation to cancer prevention, owing to their potential anticarcinogenic properties. We examined the association between certain fruits, vegetables, carotenoids, and vitamin A and breast cancer risk in a large population-based case-control study of women residing in the states of Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Wisconsin. The study was comprised of 5,707 women with incident invasive breast cancer (2,363 premenopausal women and 3,516 postmenopausal women) and 6,389 population controls (2,594 premenopausal women and 3,516 postmenopausal women). In an interview, women were asked about their intake of carotenoid rich fruits and vegetables 5 years prior to a referent date. An inverse association observed among premenopausal women was for high levels of vitamin A (OR: 0.82, 95% CI: 0.68-0.98, p for trend = 0.01), beta-carotene (OR: 0.81, 95% CI 0.68-0.98, p for trend = 0.009), alpha-carotene (OR: 0.82, 95% CI: 0.68-0.98, p for trend = 0.07) and lutein/zeaxanthin (OR: 0.83, 95% CI 0.68-0.99, p for trend = 0.02). An inverse association was not observed among postmenopausal women. Among premenopausal women who reported ever smoking, these results were stronger than among never smokers, although tests for interaction were not statistically significant. Results from this study are comparable to previous prospective studies, and suggest that a high consumption of carotenoids may reduce the risk of premenopausal but not postmenopausal breast cancer, particularly among smokers.

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    • "This is due to the fact that algae produce a combination of cis-and trans-isomers of β-carotene, while mainly the trans-forms are produced synthetically (Yeum and Russell, 2002). Like other antioxidants , many carotenoids are claimed to have anticancer activity (Cha et al., 2008; Mignone et al., 2009), as described in the Section " Other antioxidants " . All wild types of green microalgae are likely to show an increase in secondary carotenoid content under certain stress conditions. "
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    ABSTRACT: Full text: Green microalgae for several decades have been produced for commercial exploitation, with applications ranging from health food for human consumption, aquaculture and animal feed, to coloring agents, cosmetics and others. Several products from green algae which are used today consist of secondary metabolites that can be extracted from the algal biomass. The best known examples are the carotenoids astaxanthin and β-carotene, which are used as coloring agents and for health-promoting purposes. Many species of green algae are able to produce valuable metabolites for different uses; examples are antioxidants, several different carotenoids, polyunsaturated fatty acids, vitamins, anticancer and antiviral drugs. In many cases, these substances are secondary metabolites that are produced when the algae are exposed to stress conditions linked to nutrient deprivation, light intensity, temperature, salinity and pH. In other cases, the metabolites have been detected in algae grown under optimal conditions, and little is known about optimization of the production of each product, or the effects of stress conditions on their production. Some green algae have shown the ability to produce significant amounts of hydrogen gas during sulfur deprivation, a process which is currently studied extensively worldwide. At the moment, the majority of research in this field has focused on the model organism, Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, but other species of green algae also have this ability. Currently there is little information available regarding the possibility for producing hydrogen and other valuable metabolites in the same process. This study aims to explore which stress conditions are known to induce the production of different valuable products in comparison to stress reactions leading to hydrogen production. Wild type species of green microalgae with known ability to produce high amounts of certain valuable metabolites are listed and linked to species with ability to produce hydrogen during general anaerobic conditions, and during sulfur deprivation. Species used today for commercial purposes are also described. This information is analyzed in order to form a basis for selection of wild type species for a future multi-step process, where hydrogen production from solar energy is combined with the production of valuable metabolites and other commercial uses of the algal biomass.
    Critical Reviews in Biotechnology 07/2012; 33(2). DOI:10.3109/07388551.2012.681625 · 7.84 Impact Factor
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    • "On the other hand, saturated fat consumption is linked to breast cancer in women, but this has not been conclusively demonstrated in animal studies [33]. Similarly, dietary vitamin A, carotenoid and Vitamin D intake has been individually shown to prevent breast cancer in a number of human and animal studies, although a unifying outcome remains lacking [34] [35]. The differences in physiological status of human subjects (prepubertal and postpubertal ; premenopausal and postmenopausal), source of dietary factors (from foods or supplements) as well as varying doses and 'developmental window' of dietary exposure in the many studies described in the literature [22] [32] [36] had preempted conclusive indications of the breast cancer-preventive benefits of consumption of any dietary factor. "
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