MedicalResearch.com Interview with
Irene Shui ScD MPH
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Seattle, WA 98109
MedicalResearch: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
Dr. Shui: Given the high prevalence of prostate cancer and the wide international variation in vitamin D status, identifying causal links between the two could have a large public health impact. Evidence from experimental animal and cell line studies support anti-cancer properties of vitamin D. However, the results from human epidemiologic studies for prostate cancer risk have been equivocal. Few studies have addressed risk of fatal prostate cancer prostate cancer. One recent study reported a 57% reduction in the risk of fatal prostate cancer in men with the highest vs. lowest vitamin D levels. The purpose of this study was to follow-up on these findings in a large cohort consortium with over 500 cases of fatal prostate cancer.
MedicalResearch: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?
Dr. Shui: We did not find consistent evidence among 5 cohort studies to support an increased or decreased risk of dying from prostate cancer based on a man’s levels of circulating vitamin D. However, we observed some evidence that common genetic variation in genes involved in vitamin D metabolism and signaling may modify this association. Patients should discuss their vitamin D status with their health care provider as it is important for bone health, immune function, and may prevent other diseases.
MedicalResearch: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?
Dr. Shui: Studies of Vitamin D should consider if variation in genes involved in vitamin D metabolism and signaling could modify disease associations.
Shui, I. M., Mondul, A. M., Lindström, S., Tsilidis, K. K., Travis, R. C., Gerke, T., Albanes, D., Mucci, L. A., Giovannucci, E., Kraft, P. and for the Breast and Prostate Cancer Cohort Consortium Group (2015), Circulating vitamin D, vitamin D–related genetic variation, and risk of fatal prostate cancer in the National Cancer Institute Breast and Prostate Cancer Cohort Consortium. Cancer. doi: 10.1002/cncr.29320
MedicalResearch.com Interview with, Irene Shui ScD MPH (2015). Genetic Vitamin D Metabolism Linked To Fatal Prostate Cancer