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Eur J Nutr. 2020 Mar;59(2):671-683. doi: 10.1007/s00394-019-01934-5. Epub 2019 Mar 5.

Food intake of folate, folic acid and other B vitamins with lung cancer risk in a low-income population in the Southeastern United States.

Author information

1
Division of Epidemiology, Department of Medicine, Vanderbilt Epidemiology Center and Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, 1161 21st Avenue South, Nashville, TN, 37232, USA.
2
College of Public Health and Human Sciences, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR, USA.
3
Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, Department of Medicine and Vanderbilt Epidemiology Center, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, TN, USA.
4
International Epidemiology Field Station, Vanderbilt Institute for Clinical and Translational Research, Rockville, MD, USA.
5
Department of Internal Medicine, Meharry Medical College, Nashville, TN, USA.
6
Division of Epidemiology, Department of Medicine, Vanderbilt Epidemiology Center and Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, 1161 21st Avenue South, Nashville, TN, 37232, USA. qiuyin.cai@vanderbilt.edu.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

We prospectively examined associations of lung cancer risk with food intake of B vitamins involved in one-carbon metabolism and the use of folic acid-containing supplements among a low-income population of black and white adults in the Southeastern US.

METHODS:

Within the Southern Community Cohort Study, we included 1064 incident lung cancer cases among 68,236 participants aged 40-79 years at study enrollment. Food intake and the use of folic acid-containing supplements were assessed using a validated food frequency questionnaire at study enrollment. Multivariate Cox regression was used to estimate hazards ratios (HRs) and the 95% confidence intervals (CIs).

RESULTS:

Folate and/or folic acid intake from food were not associated with lung cancer risk; HRs (95% CI) for highest compared with lowest quartile were 1.08 (0.91-1.29) for total dietary folate, 1.00 (0.84-1.19) for food folate, and 1.09 (0.91-1.30) for food folic acid, respectively. Similarly, no associations were observed after stratifying by sex, race and smoking status, except for a positive association with total dietary folate intake among black women (HR 1.46, 95% CI 1.04-2.05 for the highest quartile compared with the lowest quartile, P trend = 0.02). Neither the use of folic acid-containing supplements nor food intake of vitamin B6, vitamin B12 and riboflavin were associated with lung cancer risk.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our findings do not support a protective effect of folate or folic acid for lung cancer prevention in a low-income population of black and white adults in the Southeastern US. Our finding of a positive association with total dietary folate intake among black women needs to be interpreted with caution and replicated in other studies.

KEYWORDS:

African Americans; Folate; Folic acid; Lung cancer

PMID:
30838435
PMCID:
PMC6728240
[Available on 2020-09-05]
DOI:
10.1007/s00394-019-01934-5

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