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Public Health Nutr. 2007 Jan;10(1):97-105.

Impact of nutrients on insulin-like growth factor-I, insulin-like growth factor binding protein-3 and their ratio in African American and white males.

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Department of Biostatistics, Bioinformatics, and Epidemiology, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC, USA.



Higher levels of insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I) and lower levels of IGF binding protein-3 (IGFBP-3) have been associated with an increased risk of prostate cancer. Nutrition is known to partially regulate IGF levels and it is possible that nutritional factors mediate the impact of IGF levels on prostate cancer risk.


A cross-sectional analysis of the impact of nutritional factors measured by a dietary questionnaire on plasma levels of IGF-I, IGFBP-3 and their molar ratio. Multiple linear regression analysis was used to test for effects of nutrients on IGF levels.


Prostate cancer screening at the Hollings Cancer Center in Charleston, South Carolina.


Ninety-five African American and 138 white males aged 33-83 years attending the screening.


In whites, intakes of total, saturated and monounsaturated fats were positively associated with an increase in the molar ratio, while there was no association in African Americans. In African Americans, we found that increasing intake of calcium and dairy servings was positively associated with IGF-I levels. Increased vegetable intake was positively associated with IGFBP-3 in African Americans, while there was no effect in whites. A higher percentage of alcohol in the total diet was significantly associated with a decrease in the molar ratio and an increase in IGFBP-3 in both groups.


Our results confirm previous findings of nutritional determinants of IGF levels. Additionally, we found the impact of several nutrients on IGF levels to be different in whites and African Americans, which warrants further investigation.

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