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Int J Cancer. 2016 May 15;138(10):2368-82. doi: 10.1002/ijc.29973.

Associations between unprocessed red and processed meat, poultry, seafood and egg intake and the risk of prostate cancer: A pooled analysis of 15 prospective cohort studies.

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Department of Nutrition, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA.
Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA.
Department of Biostatistics, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA.
Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, National Cancer Institute, NIH, DHHS, Bethesda, MD.
Nuffield Department of Population Health, Clinical Trial Service Unit and Epidemiological Studies Unit, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom.
Department of Epidemiology, GROW-School for Oncology and Developmental Biology, Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands.
Cancer Epidemiology Centre, The Cancer Council Victoria, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Melbourne School of Population and Global Health, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
Channing Division of Network Medicine, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA.
Department of Food and Chemical Risk Analysis, TNO Quality of Life, Zeist, The Netherlands.
Division of Public Health Sciences, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA.
SWOG Statistical Center, Seattle, WA.
Division of Nutritional Epidemiology, Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.
Epidemiology and Prevention Group, Research Center for Cancer Prevention and Screening, National Cancer Center, Tokyo, Japan.
Nuffield Department of Population Health, Cancer Epidemiology Unit, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom.
Department of Epidemiology, Cancer Research Center, University of Hawaii, Honolulu, HI.
Department of Chronic Disease Prevention, National Institute for Health and Welfare, Helsinki, Finland.
Epidemiology Research Program, American Cancer Society, Atlanta, GA.
Division of Public Health Sciences, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO.
Department of Epidemiology, The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD.
Cancer Prevention Program, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA.


Reports relating meat intake to prostate cancer risk are inconsistent. Associations between these dietary factors and prostate cancer were examined in a consortium of 15 cohort studies. During follow-up, 52,683 incident prostate cancer cases, including 4,924 advanced cases, were identified among 842,149 men. Cox proportional hazard models were used to calculate study-specific relative risks (RR) and then pooled using random effects models. Results do not support a substantial effect of total red, unprocessed red and processed meat for all prostate cancer outcomes, except for a modest positive association for tumors identified as advanced stage at diagnosis (advanced(r)). For seafood, no substantial effect was observed for prostate cancer regardless of stage or grade. Poultry intake was inversely associated with risk of advanced and fatal cancers (pooled multivariable RR [MVRR], 95% confidence interval, comparing ≥ 45 vs. <5 g/day: advanced 0.83, 0.70-0.99; trend test p value 0.29), fatal, 0.69, 0.59-0.82, trend test p value 0.16). Participants who ate ≥ 25 versus <5 g/day of eggs (1 egg ∼ 50 g) had a significant 14% increased risk of advanced and fatal cancers (advanced 1.14, 1.01-1.28, trend test p value 0.01; fatal 1.14, 1.00-1.30, trend test p value 0.01). When associations were analyzed separately by geographical region (North America vs. other continents), positive associations between unprocessed red meat and egg intake, and inverse associations between poultry intake and advanced, advanced(r) and fatal cancers were limited to North American studies. However, differences were only statistically significant for eggs. Observed differences in associations by geographical region warrant further investigation.


diet; egg; poultry; processed meat; prostate cancer; seafood; unprocessed red meat

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