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BMC Cancer. 2012 Jan 19;12:25. doi: 10.1186/1471-2407-12-25.

Cholesterol and the risk of grade-specific prostate cancer incidence: evidence from two large prospective cohort studies with up to 37 years' follow up.

Author information

  • 1Institute of Health & Wellbeing, Public Health, University of Glasgow, 1 Lilybank Gardens, Glasgow G12 8RZ, UK. k.shafique.1@research.gla.ac.uk

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

High cholesterol may be a modifiable risk factor for prostate cancer but results have been inconsistent and subject to potential "reverse causality" where undetected disease modifies cholesterol prior to diagnosis.

METHODS:

We conducted a prospective cohort study of 12,926 men who were enrolled in the Midspan studies between 1970 and 1976 and followed up to 31st December 2007. We used Cox-Proportional Hazards Models to evaluate the association between baseline plasma cholesterol and Gleason grade-specific prostate cancer incidence. We excluded cancers detected within at least 5 years of cholesterol assay.

RESULTS:

650 men developed prostate cancer in up to 37 years' follow-up. Baseline plasma cholesterol was positively associated with hazard of high grade (Gleason scoreā‰„8) prostate cancer incidence (n = 119). The association was greatest among men in the 2nd highest quintile for cholesterol, 6.1 to < 6.69 mmol/l, Hazard Ratio 2.28, 95% CI 1.27 to 4.10, compared with the baseline of < 5.05 mmol/l. This association remained significant after adjustment for body mass index, smoking and socioeconomic status.

CONCLUSIONS:

Men with higher cholesterol are at greater risk of developing high-grade prostate cancer but not overall risk of prostate cancer. Interventions to minimise metabolic risk factors may have a role in reducing incidence of aggressive prostate cancer.

PMID:
22260413
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3271031
Free PMC Article

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