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  • 1
    Abstract: AIM OF THE STUDY: A vast majority of human malignancies are associated with ageing, and age is a strong predictor of cancer risk. Recently, DNA methylation-based marker of ageing, known as 'epigenetic clock', has been linked with cancer risk factors. This study aimed to evaluate whether the epigenetic clock is associated with breast cancer risk susceptibility and to identify potential epigenetics-based biomarkers for risk stratification. METHODS: Here, we profiled DNA methylation changes in a nested case-control study embedded in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) cohort (n = 960) using the Illumina HumanMethylation 450K BeadChip arrays and used the Horvath age estimation method to calculate epigenetic age for these samples. Intrinsic epigenetic age acceleration (IEAA) was estimated as the residuals by regressing epigenetic age on chronological age. RESULTS: We observed an association between IEAA and breast cancer risk (OR, 1.04; 95% CI, 1.007-1.076, P = 0.016). One unit increase in IEAA was associated with a 4% increased odds of developing breast cancer (OR, 1.04; 95% CI, 1.007-1.076). Stratified analysis based on menopausal status revealed that IEAA was associated with development of postmenopausal breast cancers (OR, 1.07; 95% CI, 1.020-1.11, P = 0.003). In addition, methylome-wide analyses revealed that a higher mean DNA methylation at cytosine-phosphate-guanine (CpG) islands was associated with increased risk of breast cancer development (OR per 1 SD = 1.20; 95 %CI: 1.03-1.40, P = 0.02) whereas mean methylation levels at non-island CpGs were indistinguishable between cancer cases and controls. CONCLUSION: Epigenetic age acceleration and CpG island methylation have a weak, but statistically significant, association with breast cancer susceptibility.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 28259012
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  • 2
    Abstract: Evidence indicates that gaining weight in adult life is associated with an elevated risk of colorectal cancer; however, biological mechanisms that may explain this association remain unclear. We evaluated the mediation effect of 20 different biomarkers on the relationship between adult weight gain and colorectal cancer, using data from a prospective nested case-control study of 452 incident cases diagnosed between 1992 and 2003 and matched within risk sets to 452 controls within the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) cohort. The proportions of mediated effects (%) were estimated on the basis of differences in percent effect changes in conditional logistic regression models with and without additional adjustment for individual biomarkers. Greater adult weight gain (〉/=300 g/year vs. 〈300 g/year) was associated with a higher risk of colon cancer (multivariable-adjusted relative risk = 1.54, 95% confidence interval: 1.07, 2.24) but not rectal cancer (relative risk = 1.07, 95% confidence interval: 0.68, 1.66). This association was accounted for mostly by attained waist circumference (reduction of 61%) and by the biomarkers soluble leptin receptor (reduction of 43%) and glycated hemoglobin (reduction of 28%). These novel data suggest that the observed association between adult weight gain and colon cancer could be primarily explained by attained abdominal fatness and biomarkers of metabolic dysfunction.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 28387787
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  • 3
    Abstract: PURPOSE: There is inconsistent evidence regarding the relationship between higher intake of nuts, being an energy-dense food, and weight gain. We investigated the relationship between nut intake and changes in weight over 5 years. METHODS: This study includes 373,293 men and women, 25-70 years old, recruited between 1992 and 2000 from 10 European countries in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) study. Habitual intake of nuts including peanuts, together defined as nut intake, was estimated from country-specific validated dietary questionnaires. Body weight was measured at recruitment and self-reported 5 years later. The association between nut intake and body weight change was estimated using multilevel mixed linear regression models with center/country as random effect and nut intake and relevant confounders as fixed effects. The relative risk (RR) of becoming overweight or obese after 5 years was investigated using multivariate Poisson regressions stratified according to baseline body mass index (BMI). RESULTS: On average, study participants gained 2.1 kg (SD 5.0 kg) over 5 years. Compared to non-consumers, subjects in the highest quartile of nut intake had less weight gain over 5 years (-0.07 kg; 95% CI -0.12 to -0.02) (P trend = 0.025) and had 5% lower risk of becoming overweight (RR 0.95; 95% CI 0.92-0.98) or obese (RR 0.95; 95% CI 0.90-0.99) (both P trend 〈0.008). CONCLUSIONS: Higher intake of nuts is associated with reduced weight gain and a lower risk of becoming overweight or obese.
    Type of Publication: Journal article epub ahead of print
    PubMed ID: 28733927
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  • 4
    Keywords: EXPRESSION ; CELL-PROLIFERATION ; ASSOCIATION ; ENERGY ; OBESITY ; p53 ; nutrition ; insulin ; FATTY-ACID SYNTHASE ; METFORMIN
    Abstract: AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) is an energy sensing/signalling intracellular protein which is activated by an increase in the cellular AMP:ATP ratio after ATP depletion. Once activated, AMPK inhibits fatty acid synthesis and the Akt-mTOR pathway, and activates the p53-p21 axis. All these molecular mechanisms are thought to play a key role in breast carcinogenesis. We investigated the genetic variability of four genes encoding AMPK (PRKAA1, PRKAA2, PRKAB1 and PRKAB2). Using a tagging approach and selecting SNPs we covered all the common genetic variation of these genes. We tested association of tagging SNPs in our four candidate genes with breast cancer (BC) risk in a study of 1340 BC cases and 2536 controls nested into the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC). Given the relevance of AMPK on fatty acid synthesis and the importance of body fatness as a BC risk factor, we tested association of SNPs and body-mass index as well. We observed no statistically significant association between the SNPs in the PRKAs genes and BC risk and BMI after correction for multiple testing.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 21116708
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  • 5
    Keywords: CANCER ; CELLS ; EXPRESSION ; PATHWAY ; RISK ; GENE ; PROTEIN ; METABOLISM ; GENETIC POLYMORPHISMS ; BREAST-CANCER ; prostate cancer ; PROSTATE-CANCER ; PHENOTYPE ; insulin ; ONCOLOGY ; NUTRITIONAL REGULATION ; GROWTH-FACTOR (IGF)-I ; IGF-BINDING-PROTEINS ; SUPPRESSES ; Fatty acid synthase ; NF-Y ; Susceptibility to cancer
    Abstract: A western lifestyle, characterised by low rates of energy expenditure and a high-energy diet rich in animal protein, saturated fats and refined carbohydrates, is associated with high incidence of prostate cancer in men. A high-energy nutritional status results in insulin/IGF signalling in cells, which in turn stimulates synthesis of fatty acids. We investigated whether the genetic variability of the genes belonging to the fatty acid synthesis pathway is related to prostate cancer risk in 815 prostate cancer cases and 1266 controls from the European Prospective Investigation on Cancer (EPIC). Using a tagging approach and selecting 252 SNPs in 22 genes, we covered all the common genetic variation of this pathway. None of the SNPs reached statistical significance after adjusting for multiple comparisons. Common SNPs in the fatty acid synthase pathway are not major contributors to prostate cancer risk.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 20965718
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  • 6
    Keywords: CANCER ; cohort studies ; RISK-FACTORS ; PREVALENCE ; nutrition ; GENETIC EPIDEMIOLOGY ; PHYSICAL-ACTIVITY ; CORONARY-HEART-DISEASE ; SPAIN ; type 2 diabetes ; LOCI ; Diabetes Mellitus ; GENOME-WIDE ASSOCIATION ; Epidemiologic research design ; Gene-lifestyle interaction ; POPULATION-BASED INCIDENCE
    Abstract: Studying gene-lifestyle interaction may help to identify lifestyle factors that modify genetic susceptibility and uncover genetic loci exerting important subgroup effects. Adequately powered studies with prospective, unbiased, standardised assessment of key behavioural factors for gene-lifestyle studies are lacking. This case-cohort study aims to investigate how genetic and potentially modifiable lifestyle and behavioural factors, particularly diet and physical activity, interact in their influence on the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Incident cases of type 2 diabetes occurring in European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) cohorts between 1991 and 2007 from eight of the ten EPIC countries were ascertained and verified. Prentice-weighted Cox regression and random-effects meta-analyses were used to investigate differences in diabetes incidence by age and sex. A total of 12,403 verified incident cases of type 2 diabetes occurred during 3.99 million person-years of follow-up of 340,234 EPIC participants eligible for InterAct. We defined a centre-stratified subcohort of 16,154 individuals for comparative analyses. Individuals with incident diabetes who were randomly selected into the subcohort (n = 778) were included as cases in the analyses. All prevalent diabetes cases were excluded from the study. InterAct cases were followed-up for an average of 6.9 years; 49.7% were men. Mean baseline age and age at diagnosis were 55.6 and 62.5 years, mean BMI and waist circumference values were 29.4 kg/m(2) and 102.7 cm in men, and 30.1 kg/m(2) and 92.8 cm in women, respectively. Risk of type 2 diabetes increased linearly with age, with an overall HR of 1.56 (95% CI 1.48-1.64) for a 10 year age difference, adjusted for sex. A male excess in the risk of incident diabetes was consistently observed across all countries, with a pooled HR of 1.51 (95% CI 1.39-1.64), adjusted for age. InterAct is a large, well-powered, prospective study that will inform our understanding of the interplay between genes and lifestyle factors on the risk of type 2 diabetes development
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 21717116
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  • 7
    Keywords: CANCER ; RISK ; BODY-WEIGHT ; WOMEN ; nutrition ; LIFE-STYLE ; MIDDLE-AGED WOMEN ; ENERGY-INTAKE ; dietary patterns ; metabolic syndrome ; GAIN ; EPIC-OXFORD ; INTERVENTION TRIAL
    Abstract: BACKGROUND: Fruit and vegetable consumption might prevent weight gain through their low energy density and high dietary fiber content. OBJECTIVE: We assessed the association between the baseline consumption of fruit and vegetables and weight change in participants from 10 European countries participating in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition study. DESIGN: Diet was assessed at baseline in 373,803 participants by using country-specific validated questionnaires. Weight was measured at baseline and self-reported at follow-up in most centers. Associations between baseline fruit and vegetable intakes (per 100 g/d) and weight change (g/y) after a mean follow-up of 5 y were assessed by using linear mixed-models, with age, sex, total energy intake, and other potential confounders controlled for. RESULTS: After exclusion of subjects with chronic diseases at baseline and subjects who were likely to misreport energy intakes, baseline fruit and vegetable intakes were not associated with weight change overall. However, baseline fruit and vegetable intakes were inversely associated with weight change in men and women who quit smoking during follow-up. We observed weak positive associations between vegetable intake and weight change in women who were overweight, were former smokers, or had high prudent dietary pattern scores and weak inverse associations between fruit intake and weight change in women who were 〉50 y of age, were of normal weight, were never smokers, or had low prudent dietary pattern scores. CONCLUSIONS: In this large study, higher baseline fruit and vegetable intakes, while maintaining total energy intakes constant, did not substantially influence midterm weight change overall but could help to reduce risk of weight gain in persons who stop smoking. The interactions observed in women deserve additional attention.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 22170373
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  • 8
    Keywords: CELL LUNG-CANCER ; RISK ; PROSTATE-CANCER ; COLON-CANCER ; CALCIUM ; PHYSICAL-ACTIVITY ; VITAMIN-D-RECEPTOR ; SERUM 25-HYDROXYVITAMIN-D ; 1,25-DIHYDROXYVITAMIN D-3 ; SUPPLEMENT USE
    Abstract: BACKGROUND: Individuals with higher blood 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] levels have a lower risk of developing colorectal cancer (CRC), but the influence of 25(OH)D on mortality after CRC diagnosis is unknown. METHODS: The association between prediagnostic 25(OH)D levels and CRC-specific (N = 444) and overall mortality (N = 541) was prospectively examined among 1,202 participants diagnosed with CRC between 1992 and 2003 in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) cohort. Multivariable Cox proportional hazards models were used to calculate HRs and corresponding 95% CIs according to 25(OH)D quintiles and genetic variation within the VDR and CASR genes. Potential dietary, lifestyle, and metabolic effect modifiers were also investigated. RESULTS: There were 541 deaths, 444 (82%) due to CRC. Mean follow-up was 73 months. In multivariable analysis, higher 25(OH)D levels were associated with a statistically significant reduction in CRC-specific (P(trend) = 0.04) and overall mortality (P(trend) = 0.01). Participants with 25(OH)D levels in the highest quintile had an adjusted HR of 0.69 (95% CI: 0.50-0.93) for CRC-specific mortality and 0.67 (95% CI: 0.50-0.88) for overall mortality, compared with the lowest quintile. Except for a possible interaction by prediagnostic dietary calcium intake (P(interaction) = 0.01), no other potential modifying factors related to CRC survival were noted. The VDR (FokI and BsmI) and CASR (rs1801725) genotypes were not associated with survival. CONCLUSIONS: High prediagnostic 25(OH)D levels are associated with improved survival of patients with CRC. Impact: Our findings may stimulate further research directed at investigating the effects of blood vitamin D levels before, at, and after CRC diagnosis on outcomes in CRC patients. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev; 21(4); 582-93. (c)2012 AACR.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 22278364
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  • 9
    Keywords: CANCER ; RISK ; PLASMA ; OBESITY ; GREEN TEA ; COFFEE ; METAANALYSIS ; milk ; BLACK TEA ; OOLONG TEA
    Abstract: BACKGROUND: In previous meta-analyses, tea consumption has been associated with lower incidence of type 2 diabetes. It is unclear, however, if tea is associated inversely over the entire range of intake. Therefore, we investigated the association between tea consumption and incidence of type 2 diabetes in a European population. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The EPIC-InterAct case-cohort study was conducted in 26 centers in 8 European countries and consists of a total of 12,403 incident type 2 diabetes cases and a stratified subcohort of 16,835 individuals from a total cohort of 340,234 participants with 3.99 million person-years of follow-up. Country-specific Hazard Ratios (HR) for incidence of type 2 diabetes were obtained after adjustment for lifestyle and dietary factors using a Cox regression adapted for a case-cohort design. Subsequently, country-specific HR were combined using a random effects meta-analysis. Tea consumption was studied as categorical variable (0, 〉0-〈1, 1-〈4, 〉/=4 cups/day). The dose-response of the association was further explored by restricted cubic spline regression. Country specific medians of tea consumption ranged from 0 cups/day in Spain to 4 cups/day in United Kingdom. Tea consumption was associated inversely with incidence of type 2 diabetes; the HR was 0.84 [95%CI 0.71, 1.00] when participants who drank 〉/=4 cups of tea per day were compared with non-drinkers (p(linear trend) = 0.04). Incidence of type 2 diabetes already tended to be lower with tea consumption of 1-〈4 cups/day (HR = 0.93 [95%CI 0.81, 1.05]). Spline regression did not suggest a non-linear association (p(non-linearity) = 0.20). CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: A linear inverse association was observed between tea consumption and incidence of type 2 diabetes. People who drink at least 4 cups of tea per day may have a 16% lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes than non-tea drinkers.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 22666334
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  • 10
    Keywords: CANCER ; COHORT ; INTERVENTION ; DIETARY-INTAKE ; OLDER WOMEN ; POSTMENOPAUSAL WOMEN ; PHYSICAL-ACTIVITY ; RANDOMIZED CONTROLLED-TRIAL ; INSULIN SENSITIVITY ; DRINKING PATTERNS
    Abstract: Abstract. Beulens JWJ, van der Schouw YT, Bergmann MM, Rohrmann S, B Schulze M, Buijsse B, Grobbee DE, Arriola L, Cauchi S, Tormo M-J, Allen NE, van der A DL, Balkau B, Boeing H, Clavel-Chapelon F, de Lauzon-Guillan B, Franks P, Froguel P, Gonzales C, Halkjaer J, Huerta JM, Kaaks R, Key TJ, Khaw KT, Krogh V, Molina-Montes E, Nilsson P, Overvad K, Palli D, Panico S, Ramon Quiros J, Ronaldsson O, Romieu I, Romaguera D, Sacerdote C, Sanchez M-J, Spijkerman AMW, Teucher B, Tjonneland A, Tumino R, Sharp S, Forouhi NG, Langenberg C, Feskens EJM, Riboli E, Wareham NJ (University Medical Center Utrecht, The Netherlands; German Institute of Human Nutrition, Potsdam-Rehbrucke, Germany; German Cancer Research Centre, Heidelberg, Germany; Basque Government, San Sebastian, CIBERESP, Spain; Institut de Biologie de Lille, Lille, France; Murcia Regional Health Council, Murcia, Spain; CIBER Epidemiologia y Salud Publica (CIBERESP), Spain; University of Oxford, Oxford, UK; National Institute of Public Health and the Environment, Bilthoven, The Netherlands; Inserm, CESP Centre for Research in Epidemiology and Population Health, Villejuif Cedex, France; Lund University, Malmo, Sweden; Imperial College, London, UK; Department of Epidemiology, Barcelona, Spain; Danish Cancer Society, Copenhagen, Denmark; University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK; Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Nazionale Tumori Milan, Milan, Italy; Andalusian School of Public Health, Granada, Spain; School of Public Health, Aarhus, Denmark; Cancer Research and Prevention Institute (ISPO), Florence, Italy; Universita Federico II, Napoli, Italy; Consejeria de Salud y Servicios Sanitarios, Oviedo-Asturias, Spain; Umea University, Umea, Sweden; International Agency for Research of Cancer, Lyon, France; Center for Cancer Prevention (CPO-Piemonte), Torino, Italy; "Civile - M.P. Arezzo" Hospital, Ragusa, Italy; Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge, UK; and Wageningen University, Wageningen, The Netherlands). Alcohol consumption and risk of type 2 diabetes in European men and women: influence of beverage type and body size. The EPIC-InterAct study. J Intern Med 2012; 272: 358-370. Objective: To investigate the association between alcohol consumption and type 2 diabetes, and determine whether this is modified by sex, body mass index (BMI) and beverage type. Design: Multicentre prospective case-cohort study. Setting: Eight countries from the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition cohort. Subjects: A representative baseline sample of 16 154 participants and 12 403 incident cases of type 2 diabetes. Interventions: Alcohol consumption assessed using validated dietary questionnaires. Main outcome measures: Occurrence of type 2 diabetes based on multiple sources (mainly self-reports), verified against medical information. Results: Amongst men, moderate alcohol consumption was nonsignificantly associated with a lower incidence of diabetes with a hazard ratio (HR) of 0.90 (95% CI: 0.78-1.05) for 6.1-12.0 versus 0.1-6.0 g day(-1) , adjusted for dietary and diabetes risk factors. However, the lowest risk was observed at higher intakes of 24.1-96.0 g day(-1) with an HR of 0.86 (95% CI: 0.75-0.98). Amongst women, moderate alcohol consumption was associated with a lower incidence of diabetes with a hazard ratio of 0.82 (95% CI: 0.72-0.92) for 6.1-12.0 g day(-1) (P interaction gender 〈0.01). The inverse association between alcohol consumption and diabetes was more pronounced amongst overweight (BMI 〉/= 25 kg m(-2) ) than normal-weight men and women (P interaction 〈 0.05). Adjusting for waist and hip circumference did not alter the results for men, but attenuated the association for women (HR=0.90, 95% CI: 0.79-1.03 for 6.1-12.0 g day(-1) ). Wine consumption for men and fortified wine consumption for women were most strongly associated with a reduced risk of diabetes. Conclusions: The results of this study show that moderate alcohol consumption is associated with a lower risk
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 22353562
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