Meat and colorectal cancer risk may have genetic variant

Meat and colorectal cancer risk may have genetic variant

Colorectal cancer is the third leading cause of cancer death in both men and women.

“Colorectal cancer is a disease that is strongly influenced by certain types of diets and diet is a modifiable risk factor for colorectal cancer.  People with the genetic variant allele have an even higher increased risk of colorectal cancer if they consume high levels of processed meat, but the baseline risk associated with meat is already pretty bad.  We’re showing the biological underpinnings of these correlations, and understand whether genetic variation may make some people more or less susceptible to certain carcinogens in food, which may have future important implications for prevention and population health”

Jane Figueiredo, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Preventive Medicine at the Keck School of Medicine of USC, October 2013.

The researchers said “…the digestion of processed meat may promote an immunological or inflammatory response that may trigger tumor development.  Another specific genetic variation appears to modify whether eating more vegetables, fruits and fiber actually lowers your colorectal cancer risk”.

A common genetic variant “rs4143094, located on the same chromosome 10 region that includes GATA3, a transcription factor gene previously linked to several forms of cancer” exists in over a third of the population – around 36% of us. 

This latest study has linked this gene to a “significantly higher” risk of colorectal cancer from the consumption of red meat and processed meat.

This study also found a protective effect from high fibre foods eaten such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, wholegrains and legumes, with the more vegetable fibre eaten, the lower the risk of colorectal cancer.

Study by Figueiredo J, et al “Genome-wide analysis highlights gene interaction with processed meat and vegetable intake for colorectal cancer risk” from the University of Southern California and the ongoing collaboration among multiple institutions worldwide, the international NIH-funded ‘Genetics and Epidemiology of Colorectal Cancer Consortium (GECCO)’, as presented at the annual American Society of Human Genetics meeting on October 25, 2013.  This study utilized a case-control analysis of 9,287 patients with colorectal cancer and 9,117 controls through 10 observational studies.  GECCO is investigating additional colorectal cancer-related variants and how genetic variants are modified by other environmental and lifestyle risk factors.  As reported by MedPage Today and on October 24, 2013.


Posted: Sunday 10 November 2013