Alcohol intake and breast cancer risk: the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC)
- 574 Downloads
Most epidemiologic studies have suggested an increased risk of breast cancer with increasing alcohol intake. Using data from 274,688 women participating in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition study (EPIC), we investigated the relation between alcohol intake and the risk of breast cancer.
Incidence rate ratios (IRRs) based on Cox proportional hazard models were calculated using reported intake of alcohol, recent (at baseline) and lifetime exposure. We adjusted for known risk factors and stratified according to study center as well as potentially modifying host factors.
During 6.4 years of follow up, 4,285 invasive cases of breast cancer within the age group 35–75 years were identified. For all countries together the IRR per 10 g/day higher recent alcohol intake (continuous) was 1.03 (95% confidence interval (CI): 1.01–1.05). When adjusted, no association was seen between lifetime alcohol intake and risk of breast cancer. No difference in risk was shown between users and non-users of HRT, and there was no significant interaction between alcohol intake and BMI, HRT or dietary folate.
This large European study supports previous findings that recent alcohol intake increases the risk of breast cancer.
KeywordsAlcohol Breast neoplasm Cohort study Hormone replacement therapy
Body mass index
Incidence rate ratio
European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition
Hormone replacement therapy
We would like to thank all the participants in the EPIC study. The authors acknowledge the important technical support given by Programmer Katja Boll and secretarial help by Jytte Fogh Larsen. Financial support: Grant sponsor: Europe Against Cancer programme of the European Commission (SANCO); Grant sponsor: Deutsche Krebshilfe; Grant sponsor: German Cancer Research Center; Grant sponsor: German Federal Ministry of Education and Research; Grant Sponsor: Danish Cancer Society; Grant sponsor: Health Research Fund of the Spanish Ministry of Health; Grant sponsor: Spanish regional governments of Andalusia, Asturia, Basque County, Murcia and Navarra; Grant sponsor: Cancer Research UK; Grant sponsor: Medical Research Council, UK; Grant sponsor: Stroke Association, UK; Grant sponsor: British Heart Foundation; Grant sponsor: Department off Health, UK; Grant sponsor: Food Standards Agency, UK; Grant sponsor: Wellcome Trust, UK; Greek Ministry of Health; Grant sponsor: Greek Ministry of Education; Grant sponsor: Italian Association for Research on Cancer; Grant sponsor: Italian National Research Council; Grant sponsor: Dutch Ministry of Public Health, Welfare and Sports; Grant sponsor: National Cancer Registry and regional cancer registries of Amsterdam, East and Maastricht, the Netherlands; Grant sponsor: World Cancer Research Fund; Grant sponsor: Swedish Cancer Society; Grant sponsor: Swedish Scientific Council; Grant sponsor: Regional Government of Skåne, Sweden; Grant sponsor: The Norwegian Cancer Society, The Norwegian Research Counsil; Grant sponsor: French League Against Cancer, 3 M Company, Mutuelle Générale de l’Education Nationale. French Institute of Health and Medical Research (INSERM), Gustave Roussey Institute, “Fondation de France”, several departmental councils in France; Grant sponsor: the ISC III Network RCESP (C03/09), Spain.
- 1.Cancer Incidence in Five Continents No. 155 (2002) IARC Scientific Publication. LyonGoogle Scholar
- 10.Feigelson HS, Jonas CR, Robertson AS, McCullough ML, Thun MJ, Calle EE (2003) Alcohol, folate, methionine, and risk of incident breast cancer in the American Cancer Society Cancer Prevention Study II Nutrition Cohort. Cancer Epidemiol Biomark Prev 12:161–164Google Scholar
- 20.Klipstein-Grobusch K, Slimani N, Krogh V et al (2002) Trends in self-reported past alcoholic beverage consumption and ethanol intake from 1950 to 1995 observed in eight European countries participating in the European Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC). Public Health Nutr 5:1297–1310PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- 23.Breslow NE, Day NE (1987) Statistical methods in cancer research. II – the design and analysis of cohort studies. WHO; International Agency for Research on Cancer, LyonGoogle Scholar
- 28.Holmberg L, Baron JA, Byers T et al (1995) Alcohol intake and breast cancer risk: effect of exposure from 15 years of age. Cancer Epidemiol Biomark Prev 4:843–847Google Scholar