Navigation Links
Low Cholesterol May Help Prevent Cancer

Two studies dispel longstanding fears about possible connection

TUESDAY, Nov. 3 (HealthDay News) -- Low blood cholesterol levels reduce the risk not only of heart disease but also of cancer, two new studies show.

The findings should help ease longstanding fears that low cholesterol is associated with an increased risk of cancer, said Dr. Demetrius Albanes, a senior investigator at the U.S. National Cancer Institute, and an author of one of two reports in the November issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention.

"These results should help dispel any lingering thoughts that low cholesterol may help cause cancer," said Eric Jacobs, strategic director of pharmacoepidemiology at the American Cancer Society, who wrote an accompanying editorial.

Data from a study that has followed more than 29,000 Finnish men for 18 years showed both the reason for fears that low cholesterol levels raised the risk of cancer and the reason why those fears were unjustified, Albanes said.

Cholesterol levels below the generally recommended 200 milligrams per deciliter were associated with an 18 percent higher overall risk of cancer, but the increased risk applied only to cases diagnosed in the early years of the study. "The finding supports the idea that lower cholesterol levels are the results of undiagnosed cancers," Albanes explained.

And higher levels of HDL cholesterol, the "good" kind that protects coronary arteries, were associated with a 14 percent lower risk of all cancers over the entire length of the study, he said.

In addition, data on the more than 5,500 men enrolled in the Prostate Cancer Prevention Trial showed that those with cholesterol levels lower than 200 had a 59 percent lower risk of developing the most dangerous form of that cancer, said a second report in the same issue of the journal.

Low cholesterol levels were more likely to be seen in men whose prostate cancers had high Gleason scores, a measure of the disruption of the prostate gland's normal structure caused by the malignancy, the study found. Prostate cancers with the highest Gleason scores are regarded as the most difficult to treat.

Cholesterol levels had no significant effect on the overall incidence of prostate cancer in the study, said study leader Elizabeth Platz, co-director of the cancer prevention and control program at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center.

But the association between low cholesterol levels and a reduced incidence of aggressive disease "is a notable reduction which is not often seen for prostate cancer," she said.

It is still not known whether statins, which help prevent heart disease by lowering blood levels of "bad" LDL cholesterol, can reduce the risk of cancer, Albanes said.

"We did not collect information in detail on cholesterol-lowering efforts," Albanes said. "It may be premature to read from our findings that such efforts to actively lower cholesterol levels can achieve a cancer benefit. Our results don't speak to that point."

Nevertheless, "evidence continues to mount that the use of statins is inversely correlated with the risk of prostate cancer," Platz said.

But both agreed that further research is needed to both prove the point and identify the molecular mechanisms behind the association.

More information

A guide to cholesterol is offered by the American Heart Association.

SOURCES: Demetrius Albanes, M.D., senior investigator, U.S. National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, Md.; Eric Jacobs, Ph.D., strategic director, pharmacoepidemiology, American Cancer Society, Atlanta; Elizabeth Platz, Ph.D., co-director, cancer prevention and control program, Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center, Baltimore; November 2009, Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention

Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. New review suggests caution on drugs to raise good cholesterol
2. Ability to cope with stress can increase good cholesterol in older white men, study finds
3. Handling Stress Properly Increases Good Cholesterol
4. When Good Cholesterol Goes Bad
5. Good Cholesterol Wont Help Heavy-Drinking Older Men
6. Mega Events in September Allow Heart Health Campaign to Reach Tens of Thousands of Hispanics During Cholesterol Awareness Month
7. September: Time to Try Cholesterol-Free Soyfoods
8. LifeMasters Provides Tips for Maintaining a Healthy Blood Cholesterol Level
9. Guacamole: Fights Hunger, Cholesterol and Cancer
10. Mega Events in September, Including Chicago Event This Sat./Sun., Allow Heart Health Campaign to Reach Tens of Thousands of Hispanics During Cholesterol Awareness Month
11. Screening Proposed for Childhood Cholesterol Levels
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... "With 30 hand-drawn hand gesture ... said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProHand Cartoon’s package ... Final Cut Pro X . Simply select a ProHand generator and drag it ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (PRWEB) , ... June 25, ... ... to helping both athletes and non-athletes recover from injury. Recently, he has implemented ... for the Oklahoma City area —Johnson is one of the first doctors to ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Angeles, CA (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... surgery procedures that most people are unfamiliar with. The article goes on to state ... procedures, but also many of these less common operations such as calf and cheek ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Marcy was in a crisis. Her son James, eight, was out of control. ... and physically. , “When something upset him, he couldn’t control his emotions,” remembers Marcy. ... rocks at my other children and say he was going to kill them. If ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... micro-osteoperforation for accelerated orthodontic treatment. Dr. Cheng has extensive experience with all areas ... , AcceleDent, and accelerated osteogenic orthodontics. , Micro-osteoperforation is a revolutionary adjunct ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016 VolitionRx ... of Dr. Edward Futcher to the ... effective June 23, 2016.Dr. Futcher was also appointed ... Governance Committees.  As a non-executive member of the ... and strategic counsel to VolitionRx in connection with ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016  MedSource announced today that it ... software solution of choice.  This latest decision demonstrates ... to their clients by offering a state-of-the-art electronic ... establishes nowEDC as the EDC platform of choice ... clients.  "nowEDC has long been a preferred EDC ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016 Any dentist who has made an implant ... process. Many of them do not even offer this as ... high laboratory costs involved. And those who ARE able to ... a high cost that the majority of today,s patients would ... Parsa Zadeh , founder of Dental Evolutions Inc. and inventor ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: