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Diabetes identified as risk factor for liver cancer across ethnic groups
Date:12/8/2013

ATLANTA Diabetes was associated with an increased risk for developing a type of liver cancer called hepatocellular carcinoma, and this association was highest for Latinos, followed by Hawaiians, African-Americans, and Japanese-Americans, according to results presented here at the Sixth AACR Conference on the Science of Cancer Health Disparities in Racial/Ethnic Minorities and the Medically Underserved, held Dec. 6-9.

"People with diabetes have a two- to threefold higher risk for hepatocellular carcinoma compared with those without diabetes," said V. Wendy Setiawan, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Department of Preventive Medicine at Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California. "We also found that the interethnic differences in the prevalence of diabetes were consistent with the pattern of hepatocellular carcinoma incidence observed across ethnicities: Ethnic groups with a high prevalence of diabetes also have high hepatocellular carcinoma rates, and those with a lower prevalence of diabetes have lower hepatocellular carcinoma rates."

The number of new cases of hepatocellular carcinoma in the United States tripled in the past three decades, with Latinos and African-Americans experiencing the largest increase in incidence. Prior research has suggested that diabetes may be a risk factor for hepatocellular carcinoma, and its increasing incidence may be contributing to the rising rate of hepatocellular carcinoma.

"People with diabetes should be aware that their condition is associated with a higher risk of developing hepatocellular carcinoma," Setiawan said. "Maintaining a healthy weight, managing their diabetes, preventing and treating hepatitis infection, and limiting alcohol and tobacco use should be in their priority to-do list."

In addition, Setiawan said that public health efforts encouraging obesity/diabetes prevention and effective diabetes management should be directed at high-risk populations.


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Contact: Jeremy Moore
jeremy.moore@aacr.org
215-446-7109
American Association for Cancer Research
Source:Eurekalert

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