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Nutr Cancer. 2001;39(2):196-203.

Dietary calcium consumption and astrocytic glioma: the San Francisco Bay Area Adult Glioma Study, 1991-1995.

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  • 1Division of Epidemiology and Biometrics, School of Public Health, College of Medicine and Public Health, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210, USA.


Previous studies suggest an association between calcium consumption and glioma risk. In the present study, we compare consumption of calcium and other dairy components and foods (cholesterol, fat, protein, calories, milk, and cheese) of 337 astrocytic glioma case patients with 450 controls from the San Francisco Bay Area Adult Glioma Study, 1991-1995. We use unconditional logistic regression models to estimate odds ratios (ORs) by gender controlling for age, education, and income. A statistically significant inverse association [p (trend) = 0.05] was observed for dietary calcium intake for women only [OR = 0.49, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.24-1.03 for highest vs. lowest quartile of consumption]. In addition, we observed elevated ORs for highest vs. lowest quartiles of cholesterol intake among women and men (OR = 2.07, 95% CI = 1.00-4.28 and OR = 1.75, 95% CI = 0.92-3.31, respectively). Calcium may exert a protective effect through its known roles in apoptosis, DNA repair, and inhibition of parathyroid hormone production. Recent evidence suggests that parathyroid hormone may influence growth and dedifferentiation of astrocytoma cells. Finally, circulating estradiol might directly stimulate intestinal absorption of calcium and may therefore explain why the inverse association of calcium intake and glioma is confined to women.

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