21 Apr NCI Study Evaluates Aspirin Use with Ovarian Cancer Risk
MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Lauren Hurwitz, PhD
Division of Cancer Epidemiology & Genetics
National Cancer Institute
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
Response: Prior studies have demonstrated that frequent (i.e., daily or near daily) use of aspirin is associated with a lower risk of developing ovarian cancer. We sought to determine if this risk reduction is also observed for individuals with greater genetic susceptibility to ovarian cancer, who may benefit more from preventive interventions.
Our study found that individuals who took aspirin frequently had a lower risk of ovarian cancer, regardless of whether they had higher or lower genetic susceptibility to ovarian cancer.
MedicalResearch.com: Is there a recommendation regarding the use of aspirin in women with an increased genetic risk of ovarian cancer?
Response: Currently, there is no specific recommendation regarding aspirin use for women with an increased genetic risk of ovarian cancer. For individuals in the general population who are 40-59 years old and at moderately increased risk of cardiovascular disease, the United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends that the decision to initiate low-dose aspirin use be an individual one; for women who meet these USPSTF criteria and have increased genetic risk of ovarian cancer, the potential benefits of aspirin for ovarian cancer risk reduction may factor into this decision.
MedicalResearch.com: Is there anything else you would like to add?
Response: Our findings suggest that frequent use of aspirin is associated with reduced ovarian cancer risk, regardless of whether one has lower or higher genetic susceptibility to ovarian cancer as predicted by a set of known, common risk variants. Women with higher genetic susceptibility to ovarian cancer based on these common risk variants may want to discuss with their doctor the benefits and harms of taking aspirin for disease prevention. Of note, our study did not address whether aspirin use is associated with reduced ovarian cancer risk among BRCA carriers, or among women with other rarer genetic variants that incur high risk of ovarian cancer, and so our findings should not be used to inform discussions around aspirin use for these specific high-risk groups.
Hurwitz LM, Webb PM, Jordan SJ, et al. Association of Frequent Aspirin Use With Ovarian Cancer Risk According to Genetic Susceptibility. JAMA Netw Open. 2023;6(2):e230666. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2023.0666
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Last Updated on April 21, 2023 by Marie Benz