Plasma Levels of B Vitamins and Colorectal Cancer Risk: The Multiethnic Cohort Study

Cancer Research Center of Hawaii, University of Hawaii, Honolulu, HI 96813, USA. .
Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers & Prevention (Impact Factor: 4.32). 09/2009; 18(8):2195-201. DOI: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-09-0141
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT B vitamins, such as folate, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12, play an important role as coenzymes in one-carbon metabolism and may affect colorectal cancer risk. We aimed to comprehensively investigate the relationships of plasma folate, pyridoxal-5'-phosphate (PLP, the active form of vitamin B6), vitamin B12, methylmalonic acid, homocysteine, and cysteine with colorectal cancer risk, accounting for suspected modifiers (alcohol intake, MTHFR C677T genotype, and plasma C-reactive protein) and potential confounders. We conducted a case-control study nested within the Multiethnic Cohort study and analyzed prospectively collected blood samples from 224 incident colorectal cancer cases and 411 controls matched on age, sex, race/ethnicity, study site, date/time of blood draw, and hours of fasting. We found an inverse association between plasma PLP levels and colorectal cancer, with odds ratios (95% confidence intervals) for increasing quartiles of 1.00, 0.84 (0.51-1.40), 0.62 (0.37-1.03), and 0.49 (0.29-0.83), with P trend = 0.009. This association was not explained by an association with plasma folate, seemed to be stronger at low levels of alcohol intake and among individuals with the MTHFR 677TT genotype, and was independent of plasma C-reactive protein levels. An inverse association with plasma folate was also observed among individuals with a low level of alcohol intake. These data suggest an independent role for vitamin B6 in reducing colorectal cancer risk.

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    ABSTRACT: Homocysteine is an amino acid generated metabolically by the S-adenosylmethionine-dependent transmethylation pathway. In addition to being a well-known independent risk factor for coronary heart disease, is also a risk factor for cancer. Patients suffering from inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) including ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease are at increased risk of developing colorectal cancer in comparison to healthy individuals. Furthermore, the risk of hyperhomocysteinaemia is significantly higher in IBD patients when compared with controls. In the present article, we review the mechanisms in which hyperhomocysteinemia may contribute to increased risk of colorectal cancer in IBD patients.
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    ABSTRACT: Experimental and epidemiological data suggest that factors of one-carbon metabolism are important in the pathogenesis of several cancers, but prospective data on head and neck cancer (HNC) and esophagus cancer are limited. The European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) study recruited 385,747 participants from 10 countries who donated a blood sample. The current study included 516 cancer cases of the head and neck and esophagus and 516 individually matched controls. Plasma levels of vitamins B2, B6, B9 (folate), B12, and methionine and homocysteine were measured in pre-diagnostic plasma samples and analyzed in relation to HNC and esophagus cancer risk, as well as post-diagnosis all-cause mortality. After controlling for risk factors, study participants with higher levels of homocysteine had elevated risk of HNC, the odds ratio (OR) in conditional analysis when comparing the top and bottom quartiles of homocysteine [ORQ4vs.Q1] being 2.13 (95% confidence interval [95% CI] 1.13-4.00, P for trend 0.009). A slight decrease in HNC risk was also seen among subjects with higher levels of folate (ORQ4vs.Q1 0.63, 95% CI 0.35-1.16, P for trend 0.02). Subgroup analyses by anatomical sub-site indicated particularly strong associations with circulating homocysteine for oral cavity and gum cancer (P for trend 8x10(-4) ), as well as for oropharynx cancer (P for trend 0.008). Plasma concentrations of the other investigated biomarkers did not display any clear association with risk or survival. In conclusion, study participants with elevated circulating levels of homocysteine had increased risk of developing squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
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    ABSTRACT: Methionine metabolism is an important component of one-carbon metabolism. S-adenosylmethionine (SAM), the methyl donor for nearly all methylation reactions, is irreversibly converted to S-adenosylhomocysteine (SAH), an inhibitor of methyltransferases, some of which are key enzymes for methylation. Changes in DNA methylation are common in colorectal cancers. We evaluated plasma SAM and SAH with colorectal adenoma risk in a matched case-control study conducted among individuals undergoing routine colonoscopy. 216 cases were individually matched to polyp-free controls in a 1:1 ratio on age (± 5 years), sex, race (white/non-white), study site (academic medical center/VA hospital) and date of sample collection (± 60 days). Sex-specific quantiles were evaluated based on the control distribution due to vastly different metabolite levels by sex. Conditional logistic regression models were used to estimate odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Among males, both higher SAM (OR = 0.38, 95% CI: 0.18-0.77, p for trend = 0.007) and higher SAH (OR = 0.45, 95% CI: 0.22-0.91, p for trend = 0.02) were associated with statistically significantly decreased risks of colorectal adenoma in comparison to lowest plasma SAM or SAH tertile. Conversely, among females, both higher SAM and higher SAH were associated with increased risk of colorectal adenoma, which was statistically significant for SAH (OR = 5.18, 95% CI: 1.09-24.62, p for trend = 0.04). The difference in these associations between men and women was statistically significant (p < 0.05). The ratio of SAM/SAH was not associated with colorectal adenoma risk among males or females. These findings suggest SAM and SAH may be involved in the development of colorectal adenoma and the association may be modified by sex.

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