, Volume 20, Issue 5, pp 699-711
Date: 16 Dec 2008

Antioxidant vitamins and the risk of endometrial cancer: a dose–response meta-analysis

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Antioxidant vitamins may reduce cancer risk by limiting oxidative DNA damage. To summarize and quantify the current epidemiologic evidence of an association between antioxidant vitamin intake and endometrial cancer, we conducted a systematic literature review and meta-analysis. One cohort and 12 case–control studies presenting relevant risk estimates were identified by conducting bibliographical searches through June 2008. Dose–response meta-analyses were conducted for beta-carotene, vitamin C, and vitamin E from food sources. Intake from supplements was not considered in the meta-analyses because of the few studies that reported relevant information. Based on case–control data, the random-effects summary odds ratios (OR) were, for beta-carotene: 0.88 (95% CI: 0.79–0.98) per 1,000 mcg/1,000 kcal (I2: 77.7%; p < 0.01); for vitamin C: 0.85 (95% CI: 0.73–0.98) per 50 mg/1,000 kcal (I2: 66.1%; p < 0.01); and, for vitamin E: 0.91 (95% CI: 0.84–0.99) per 5 mg/1,000 kcal (I2: 0.0%; p: 0.45). In contrast, the only prospective study identified provided little indication of an association. Although the current case–control data suggest an inverse relationship of endometrial cancer risk with dietary intakes of beta-carotene, vitamin C, and vitamin E from food sources, additional studies are needed, particularly cohort studies, to confirm an association.