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Am J Epidemiol. 2010 Jul 1;172(1):58-69. doi: 10.1093/aje/kwq117. Epub 2010 Jun 18.

Circulating 25-hydroxyvitamin D and risk of non-hodgkin lymphoma: Cohort Consortium Vitamin D Pooling Project of Rarer Cancers.

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National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, Maryland, USA.


Case-control studies generally suggesting an inverse association between sun exposure and non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) have led to speculation that vitamin D may protect against lymphomagenesis. To examine this hypothesis, the authors conducted a pooled investigation of circulating 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) and subsequent NHL risk within 10 cohorts participating in the Cohort Consortium Vitamin D Pooling Project of Rarer Cancers. The authors analyzed measurements from 1,353 cases and 1,778 controls using conditional logistic regression and other methods to estimate the association of 25(OH)D with NHL. No clear evidence of association between categories of 25(OH)D concentration and NHL was observed overall (P(trend) = 0.68) or by sex (men, P(trend) = 0.50; women, P(trend) = 0.16). Findings for other measures (continuous log(25(OH)D), categories of 25(OH)D using sex-/cohort-/season-specific quartiles as cutpoints, categories of season-adjusted residuals of predicted 25(OH)D using quartiles as cutpoints) were generally null, although some measures of increasing 25(OH)D were suggestive of an increased risk for women. Results from stratified analyses and investigations of histologic subtypes of NHL were also null. These findings do not support the hypothesis that elevated circulating 25(OH)D concentration is associated with a reduced risk of NHL. Future research investigating the biologic basis for the sunlight-NHL association should consider alternative mechanisms, such as immunologic effects.

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