Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Estrogen Found As Link Between Obesity And Breast Cancer In Postmenopausal Women

Date:
August 21, 2003
Source:
Fox Chase Cancer Center
Summary:
Researchers have known that obesity is associated with an increased risk of breast cancer in postmenopausal women, but a new study now explains why.

PHILADELPHIA (August 13, 2003) – Researchers have known that obesity is associated with an increased risk of breast cancer in postmenopausal women, but a new study now explains why. According to research published in the August 20, 2003, issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute obesity increases the risk of breast cancer in postmenopausal women by increasing the amount of estrogens in the blood. High levels of estrogen definitively have been linked as a causative factor for breast cancer.

Related Articles


The finding was reported by the Endogenous Hormones and Breast Cancer Collaborative Group. Joanne F. Dorgan, M.P.H, Ph.D., an epidemiologist at Fox Chase Cancer Center, is the lead investigator of one of eight cohorts included in the analysis.

"We've known that postmenopausal women who are overweight have an increased risk of breast cancer, and the risk also is higher in women who have higher levels of estrogens in their blood," said Dorgan. "Our results suggest that obesity increases breast cancer risk in postmenopausal women by increasing serum concentrations of estrogens."

For the study, researchers analyzed the blood donated by women in eight cohorts in the United States, Europe and Asia. All the women were cancer-free and were not using hormone replacement therapy when the blood was collected. The women were followed for two to 12 years and 624 women developed breast cancer. Hormones in their blood were compared with the hormones from 1,640 cancer-free women who were the same age when blood was donated as the women who developed breast cancer. Obesity was measured by body mass index (BMI), a measure of weight that is adjusted for height.

Most of the established risk factors for breast cancer are either fixed (family history and genotype) or not amenable to modification (age at menarche, number of and ages at pregnancy, age at menopause).

"This is an example of a risk factor that a woman can control," Dorgan said. "The effect of obesity on breast cancer risk is important because the prevalence of obesity is high and increasing." According to Dorgan, the estimated prevalence of obesity in U.S. women aged 60 to 74 increased from 29 percent between 1988 and 1994 to 40 percent in 1999-2000.

"Obesity is a risk factor for other diseases such as heart disease and diabetes," Dorgan added. "Women need to know that breast cancer has been added to that ominous list."

The Endogenous Hormones and Breast Cancer Collaborative Group is international consortium that includes epidemiologists from the United States, England, Italy, and Japan. The group conducts research on the relationship of endogenous hormones to breast cancer development. For the current analysis, researchers from eight of the nine cohorts pooled their data so they could evaluate whether higher serum estrogens in heavier women explains the relationship of obesity with breast cancer risk in postmenopausal women.

The nine cohorts and the principal investigators who make up the Endogenous Hormones and Breast Cancer Collaborative Group include the Columbia, Mo., cohort (JF Dorgan); the Guernsey, UK, cohort (TJ Key); Nurses' Health Study cohort (SE Hankinson); New York University Women's Health Study cohort (PG Toniolo); the ORDET, Italy, cohort (F Berrino); the Rancho Bernardo cohort (E Barrett-Connor); the RERF, Japan, cohort (M Kabuto); the SOF cohort (JA Cauley); and the Washington County, Md., cohort (KJ Helzlsouer).

Fox Chase Cancer Center, one of the nation's first comprehensive cancer centers designated by the National Cancer Institute in 1974, conducts basic and clinical research; programs of prevention, detection and treatment of cancer; and community outreach. For more information about Fox Chase activities, visit the Center's web site at http://www.fccc.edu or call 1-888-FOX CHASE.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Fox Chase Cancer Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Fox Chase Cancer Center. "Estrogen Found As Link Between Obesity And Breast Cancer In Postmenopausal Women." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 August 2003. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/08/030821072801.htm>.
Fox Chase Cancer Center. (2003, August 21). Estrogen Found As Link Between Obesity And Breast Cancer In Postmenopausal Women. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 6, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/08/030821072801.htm
Fox Chase Cancer Center. "Estrogen Found As Link Between Obesity And Breast Cancer In Postmenopausal Women." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/08/030821072801.htm (accessed March 6, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, March 6, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Bupa Eyes India Healthcare Opportunities

Bupa Eyes India Healthcare Opportunities

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 5, 2015) Bupa is hoping to expand in India&apos;s fast-growing health insurance market, once a rule change on foreign investment is implemented. The British private healthcare group&apos;s CEO tells Grace Pascoe why it&apos;s so keen on the new opportunity. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor in Your Pocket Is Getting Smarter

Doctor in Your Pocket Is Getting Smarter

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 5, 2015) Mobile apps are turning smartphones into a personal doctors, with users able to measure heart rate, blood pressure and even blood sugar. But will it change our behaviour? Ivor Bennett reports from the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
AbbVie Inks $21B Deal To Buy Cancer Drugmaker Pharmacyclics

AbbVie Inks $21B Deal To Buy Cancer Drugmaker Pharmacyclics

Newsy (Mar. 5, 2015) AbbVie announced Wednesday it will buy cancer drugmaker Pharmacyclics in a $21 billion deal. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Toddlers Drinking Coffee? Why You Shouldn't Share Your Joe

Toddlers Drinking Coffee? Why You Shouldn't Share Your Joe

Newsy (Mar. 5, 2015) A survey of Boston mothers and toddlers found that 15 percent of two-year-olds drink coffee and 2.5 percent of 1-year-olds. Video provided by Newsy
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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

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