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Am J Clin Nutr. 2010 Jun;91(6):1752-63. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.2009.28415. Epub 2010 Apr 14.

Meat, fish, and ovarian cancer risk: Results from 2 Australian case-control studies, a systematic review, and meta-analysis.

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Queensland Institute of Medical Research, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.



Variation in meat and fish intakes has been associated with a risk of some cancers, but evidence for ovarian cancer is limited and inconsistent.


We examined the association between intakes of total meat, red meat, processed meat, poultry, and fish and ovarian cancer risk.


Data came from 2 Australian population-based case-control studies conducted 10 y apart. Analyses included a total of 2049 cases and 2191 control subjects. We obtained dietary information via a food-frequency questionnaire. We estimated multivariable-adjusted odds ratios (ORs) for each study by using logistic regression and combined results of the 2 studies by using random-effects models. We also assembled the published evidence in a systematic review and meta-analysis.


Although there was no association between total or red meat intake and ovarian cancer risk, women with the highest intake of processed meat had a significantly increased risk of ovarian cancer in the 2 case-control studies (combined OR: 1.18; 95% CI: 1.15, 1.21) and the meta-analysis [7 studies; pooled relative risk (RR): 1.20; 95% CI: 1.07, 1.34]. In contrast, a frequent intake of poultry was associated with borderline significant reductions in risk in the 2 case-control studies (combined OR: 0.83; 95% CI: 0.67, 1.03) and the meta-analysis including 7 additional studies (pooled RR: 0.90; 95% CI: 0.79, 1.01). High fish intake was associated with a significantly reduced risk in the 2 case-control studies (combined OR: 0.76; 95% CI: 0.62, 0.94) and a smaller borderline significant reduction in the meta-analysis (6 additional studies; pooled RR: 0.84; 95% CI: 0.68, 1.03).


Our results suggest that low consumption of processed meat and higher consumption of poultry and fish may reduce the risk of ovarian cancer.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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