Effects of estrogen plus progestin on gynecologic cancers and associated diagnostic procedures: the Women's Health Initiative randomized trial.
ABSTRACT The effects of continuous combined hormone therapy on gynecologic cancers have not been investigated previously in a randomized trial setting.
To determine the possible associations of estrogen plus progestin on gynecologic cancers and related diagnostic procedures.
Randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of 16 608 postmenopausal women, who had not had a hysterectomy at baseline and who had been recruited from 40 US clinical centers between September 1993 and October 1998 (average follow-up, 5.6 years).
One tablet per day containing 0.625 mg of conjugated equine estrogens plus 2.5 mg of medroxyprogesterone acetate (n = 8506) or placebo (n = 8102).
Incident invasive cancer of the ovary and endometrium.
In 5.6 years of follow-up, there were 32 cases of invasive ovarian cancer, 58 cases of endometrial cancer, 1 case of nonendometrial uterine cancer, 13 cases of cervical cancer, and 7 cases of other gynecologic cancers. The hazard ratio (HR) for invasive ovarian cancer in women assigned to estrogen plus progestin compared with placebo was 1.58 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.77-3.24). The HR for endometrial cancer was 0.81 (95% CI, 0.48-1.36). No appreciable differences were found in the distributions of tumor histology, stage, or grade for either cancer site. The incidence of other gynecologic cancers was low and did not differ by randomization assignment. More women taking estrogen plus progestin required endometrial biopsies (33% vs 6%; P<.001).
This randomized trial suggests that continuous combined estrogen plus progestin therapy may increase the risk of ovarian cancer while producing endometrial cancer rates similar to placebo. The increased burden of endometrial biopsies required to assess vaginal bleeding further limits the acceptability of this regimen. These data provide additional support for caution in the use of continuous combined hormones.
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ABSTRACT: Endometrial carcinoma (EC) is the leading female genital tract malignancy in industrialized countries. It will become an important public health problem in the coming years in the USA and Europe, where its incidence is increasing, and next-generation interventions should include periodical screening in high-risk women. In this review, we discuss the importance to gynaecologists of detecting women at high risk and offering an adequate screening programme. Screening for EC is particularly challenging and there is currently no proven programme for the surveillance of women estimated to be at an increased risk of developing this form of cancer. The data in the literature, including this and previous issues of Cytopathology, and personal experience suggest that endometrial liquid-based cytology (LBC) might play an essential role in a screening policy for EC. LBC may enable practitioners to reduce age-adjusted mortality for women at high risk for EC.Cytopathology 01/2014; · 1.71 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The principal findings are briefly reviewed from the Women's Health Initiative trials of the most commonly used postmenopausal hormone regimens in the United States-conjugated equine estrogens and these same estrogens plus medroxyprogesterone acetate. A more detailed review is presented for three major clinical outcomes: coronary heart disease (CHD), the primary trial outcome for which a major benefit was hypothesized; invasive breast cancer, the primary safety outcome for which some adverse effect was expected; and stroke which surfaced as an important adverse effect with both regimens, and one that is influential in decisions concerning the continued use of postmenopausal estrogens alone. The review for these outcomes includes an update on interactions of treatment effects with study subject characteristics and exposures and with prerandomization biomarker levels. It also includes a focus on timing issues that are important to the understanding of treatment effects. Specifically, with combined estrogen plus progestin, CHD risk was elevated early with the elevation dissipating after a few years of treatment, whereas breast cancer elevations increased during the treatment period, and climbed to about a threefold increase following 5 years of adherence. Importantly, breast cancer risk elevations appear to be higher among women who initiate treatment at the menopause, or soon thereafter, compared with women having a longer gap time. Stroke effects, on the contrary, did not seem to vary appreciably with these timing issues. The adverse effect was evidently localized to ischemic strokes, for which there was an approximate 50% increase with either regimen. The rather limited knowledge concerning the biomarkers and biological pathways that mediate the hormone therapy effects on these diseases is also briefly reviewed.Seminars in Reproductive Medicine 11/2014; 32(6):419-425. · 3.21 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: As ovarian tumors progress, they undergo a process of dedifferentiation, allowing adaptive changes in growth and morphology that promote metastasis and chemoresistance. Herein, we outline a hypothesis that TATA-box binding protein associated factors (TAFs), which compose the RNA Polymerase II initiation factor, TFIID, contribute to regulation of dedifferentiation states in ovarian cancer. Numerous studies demonstrate that TAFs regulate differentiation and proliferation states; their expression is typically high in pluripotent cells and reduced upon differentiation. Strikingly, TAF2 exhibits copy number increases or mRNA overexpression in 73% of high-grade serous ovarian cancers (HGSC). At the biochemical level, TAF2 directs TFIID to TATA-less promoters by contact with an Initiator element, which may lead to the deregulation of the transcriptional output of these tumor cells. TAF4, which is altered in 66% of HGSC, is crucial for the stability of the TFIID complex and helps drive dedifferentiation of mouse embryonic fibroblasts to induced pluripotent stem cells. Its ovary-enriched paralog, TAF4B, is altered in 26% of HGSC. Here, we show that TAF4B mRNA correlates with Cyclin D2 mRNA expression in human granulosa cell tumors. TAF4B may also contribute to regulation of tumor microenvironment due to its estrogen-responsiveness and ability to act as a cofactor for NFκB. Conversely, TAF9, a cofactor for p53 in regulating apoptosis, may act as a tumor suppressor in ovarian cancer, since it is downregulated or deleted in 98% of HGSC. We conclude that a greater understanding of mechanisms of transcriptional regulation that execute signals from oncogenic signaling cascades is needed in order to expand our understanding of the etiology and progression of ovarian cancer, and most importantly to identify novel targets for therapeutic intervention.Frontiers in Oncology 01/2014; 4:45.