AACR: Vitamins and Calcium May Lessen Breast Cancer Risk

Effect of vitamins appears independent of DNA repair capacity

MONDAY, April 19 (HealthDay News) -- Vitamins and calcium supplements are both associated with higher DNA repair capacity and may reduce the risk of breast cancer, according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research, held from April 17 to 21 in Washington, D.C.

Yeidyly Vergne, of the Ponce School of Medicine in Puerto Rico, and colleagues evaluated 268 Puerto Rican women with breast cancer and 457 healthy controls.

The researchers found vitamin supplements reduced the risk of breast cancer by 30 percent and that calcium supplements reduced the risk by 40 percent. Calcium intake and vitamin intake were both strongly associated with higher levels of DNA repair capacity, the researchers found. However, after they controlled for the level of DNA repair capacity, they found that calcium's protective effect was reduced, but the association between vitamin supplements and breast cancer reduction remained.

"Vitamins' intake is an independent protective factor for breast cancer while the protective effect of calcium may be explained by an increased DNA repair capacity," the authors write. "DNA repair capacity can be used to monitor the protective effect of calcium in terms of breast cancer risk."

Abstract No. 976
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