Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New UNC Study Suggests Multivitamin Use During Pregnancy Cuts Childhood Tumor Risk

Date:
August 30, 2002
Source:
University Of North Carolina At Chapel Hill
Summary:
The largest epidemiologic study ever conducted in North America of a childhood nervous system cancer known as neuroblastoma suggests women who take multivitamins during pregnancy can cut their children's risk of the tumor by 30 percent to 40 percent.

CHAPEL HILL -- The largest epidemiologic study ever conducted in North America of a childhood nervous system cancer known as neuroblastoma suggests women who take multivitamins during pregnancy can cut their children's risk of the tumor by 30 percent to 40 percent.

Researchers could not pinpoint which vitamin or vitamins were most responsible for the reduced risk, but say their findings support and are consistent with earlier studies indicating vitamin use during pregnancy seems to help protect against childhood leukemias and brain tumors.

A report on the study, conducted chiefly at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, appears in the September issue of Epidemiology, a scientific journal. Researchers at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center at the University of Texas in Houston, the U.T. Health Science Center in San Antonio and the University of Minnesota also helped with the study.

"Neuroblastoma is a peripheral nervous system tumor in children," said Dr. Andrew F. Olshan, professor of epidemiology at the UNC School of Public Health and a member of the Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center. "It is the most common tumor diagnosed in infants and is usually diagnosed in children under age 3. Typically, fewer than 50 percent of affected patients live five years following diagnosis."

Olshan and colleagues identified 538 children with neuroblastoma in 139 U.S. and Canadian hospitals that belong to the Children's Oncology Group, a collaborative group of health centers that conduct treatment and epidemiologic studies of childhood cancer. Through random digit telephone dialing, they also selected 504 comparable "control" subject children without the illness.

Researchers then interviewed mothers of both groups to learn about their vitamin use before, during and after pregnancy and other possible health- and illness-related factors. They also adjusted for as many potentially confounding factors as they could -- such as education and income -- and compared the two groups statistically.

"Findings of our case-control study suggest a beneficial association but do not prove one," the UNC scientist said. "Also, the specific vitamin or vitamins potentially responsible for the reduction in risk are uncertain."

More study, especially laboratory work, needs to be done to evaluate and prove whether individual vitamins or combinations of them can prevent neuroblastomas from forming or progressing, Olshan said. Still, the new results are encouraging.

"Our finding, combined with previous work on reducing several birth defects with vitamin supplementation and other childhood cancers, supports the recommendation that mothers' vitamin use before and during pregnancy may benefit their babies' health," he said. "We believe physicians and other health care providers should continue to educate women about these benefits and recommend appropriate dietary habits and daily dietary supplements."

Among nutrients researchers believe might reduce the incidence of childhood cancers are folic acid, and vitamins C and A, but the specific vitamin responsible remains unknown, Olshan said. National recommendations and educational campaigns to promote prenatal vitamin use to prevent some birth defects such as spina bifida, specifically folic acid, began in 1992.

Co-authors of the new paper are Joanna Smith of the UNC School of Public Health, Dr. Melissa Bondy of M.D. Anderson in Houston, Dr. Joseph Neglia of the University of Minnesota and Dr. Brad H. Pollock of the University of Texas in San Antonio.

In the United States, 9.1 cases of neuroblastoma occur for every 1 million children under age 15. The National Cancer Institute supports the continuing research.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of North Carolina At Chapel Hill. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of North Carolina At Chapel Hill. "New UNC Study Suggests Multivitamin Use During Pregnancy Cuts Childhood Tumor Risk." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 August 2002. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/08/020830071519.htm>.
University Of North Carolina At Chapel Hill. (2002, August 30). New UNC Study Suggests Multivitamin Use During Pregnancy Cuts Childhood Tumor Risk. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/08/020830071519.htm
University Of North Carolina At Chapel Hill. "New UNC Study Suggests Multivitamin Use During Pregnancy Cuts Childhood Tumor Risk." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/08/020830071519.htm (accessed September 2, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Get on Your Bike! London Cycling Popularity Soars Despite Danger

Get on Your Bike! London Cycling Popularity Soars Despite Danger

AFP (Sep. 1, 2014) Wedged between buses, lorries and cars, cycling in London isn't for the faint hearted. Nevertheless the number of people choosing to bike in the British capital has doubled over the past 15 years. Duration: 02:27 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Can You Train Your Brain To Eat Healthy?

Can You Train Your Brain To Eat Healthy?

Newsy (Sep. 1, 2014) New research says if you condition yourself to eat healthy foods, eventually you'll crave them instead of junk food. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) A new study suggests 100 percent of adult humans (those over 18 years of age) have Demodex mites living in their faces. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

AFP (Aug. 30, 2014) Authorities in Liberia try to stem the spread of the Ebola epidemic by raising awareness and setting up sanitation units for people to wash their hands. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins