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PLoS One. 2013 Oct 28;8(10):e75732. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0075732. eCollection 2013.

Cruciferous vegetables intake is associated with lower risk of renal cell carcinoma: evidence from a meta-analysis of observational studies.

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Department of Nephrology, Shandong Weifang People's Hospital, Weifang, China.



Epidemiologic studies have evaluated the association between cruciferous vegetables(CV) intake and the risk of renal cell carcinoma(RCC); however, the existing results are controversial. The aim of this meta-analysis was to investigate the association between CV intake and RCC risk.


A literature search was carried out using PUBMED and EMBASE database between January 1966 and March 2013. Fixed-effect and random-effect models were used to estimate summary relative risks (RR) and the corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Potential sources of heterogeneity were detected by meta-regression. Subgroup analyses, sensitivity analysis and cumulative meta-analysis were also performed.


A total of 12 studies (six cohorts, six case-control) contributed to the analysis, involving 1,228,518 participants and 5,773 RCC cases. When all studies were pooled, we observed a significantly inverse association between CV intake and RCC risk (RR = 0.81, 95% CI [0.72, 0.91]). This association was also significant when analyses were restricted to six high-quality studies (RR = 0.89, 95% CI [0.82, 0.98]). In subgroup analyses, CV intake was significantly associated with reduced RCC risk among studies conducted in America (RR = 0.77, 95%CI [0.70, 0.86]); however, CV intake had no significant association with RCC risk among studies conducted in Europe (RR = 0.87, 95%CI [0.71, 1.07]). Furthermore, sensitivity analysis confirmed the stability of results.


The findings of this meta-analysis suggested that high intake of CV was inversely associated with RCC risk among Americans. More studies, especially high quality cohort studies with larger sample size, well controlled confounding factors are warranted to confirm this association.

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