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Endocr Relat Cancer. 2007 Sep;14(3):669-77.

Anthropometric measures, plasma adiponectin, and breast cancer risk.

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Department of Surgery, Chi Mei Medical Center, Tainan, Taiwan.


Adiponectin is a peptide hormone secreted exclusively by adipocytes, and obesity is an established risk factor for breast cancer. We have, thus, evaluated the associations of anthropometric measures of adiposity and adiponectin with the development of breast cancer in a case-control study. Questionnaire information, anthropometric measures, and blood samples were taken before treatment from 244 incident cases with breast cancer, including 141 premenopausal and 103 postmenopausal cases, and 244 controls admitted for health examination at the Tri-Service General Hospital, Taipei between 2004 and 2005. Plasma levels of adiponectin were measured by RIA. The relationship between anthropometric measures of adiposity and breast cancer risk was modified by menopausal status, with a significant increase in risk observed in postmenopausal but not premenopausal women. Moreover, a fairly robust inverse association of adiponectin with the risk was observed only in postmenopausal women (adjusted odds ratio (OR), 0.55; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.23-0.97), but not in premenopausal women. Additionally, the plasma adiponectin levels tended to be inversely associated with estrogen receptor (ER)-positive (adjusted OR, 0.53; 95% CI, 0.27-0.98) but not ER-negative breast tumors. Furthermore, the associations of adiponectin with breast cancer risk overall and by menopausal and ER status remained after adjustment for obesity indices. These results suggest that adiponectin may have an independent role in breast carcinogenesis, particularly in the postmenopausal and ER-positive breast cancer risk.

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