Cancer Causes & Control

, Volume 25, Issue 3, pp 385–394

Fasting insulin and endogenous hormones in relation to premenopausal breast density (Canada)

  • Marilyn J. Borugian
  • John J. Spinelli
  • Paula B. Gordon
  • Zenaida Abanto
  • Angela Brooks-Wilson
  • Michael N. Pollak
  • Linda J. Warren
  • T. Gregory Hislop
  • Richard P. Gallagher
Original paper
  • 223 Downloads

Abstract

Purpose

Mammographic breast density (BD) is associated with increased risk of breast cancer. This study asks which circulating metabolic and reproductive biomarkers are associated with BD, particularly dense breast area, in premenopausal women not taking exogenous hormones.

Methods

In a cross-sectional study, 299 premenopausal women aged 40–49 completed questionnaires, provided a fasting blood sample, had height, weight, percentage body fat, waist and hip measurements taken, and attended a screening mammogram. Multivariate linear regression was used to calculate adjusted means for percentage BD, absolute dense and non-dense area, across categories of covariates, adjusted for day of menstrual cycle, age, parity, body mass index, percentage body fat, and ethnicity.

Results

Fasting insulin levels were inversely associated, and insulin-like growth factor-binding protein 1 levels directly associated with percentage BD, but lost statistical significance after multivariate adjustment. Sex hormone-binding globulin levels were directly associated with percentage BD, still significant after multivariate adjustment (p = 0.03). A significant inverse dose–response association was observed between progesterone levels and dense area (p < 0.01).

Conclusions

Breast density in premenopausal women seems unrelated or inversely related to insulin resistance, levels of insulin-like growth factor 1 and its binding proteins, and levels of sex steroids; therefore, the mechanism by which radiodensity on a mammogram is related to breast cancer risk remains unclear.

Keywords

Mammographic breast density Insulin resistance Premenopausal Insulin-like growth factors Sex steroid hormones Breast cancer 

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marilyn J. Borugian
    • 1
    • 2
  • John J. Spinelli
    • 1
    • 2
  • Paula B. Gordon
    • 5
  • Zenaida Abanto
    • 1
  • Angela Brooks-Wilson
    • 1
    • 3
    • 4
  • Michael N. Pollak
    • 6
  • Linda J. Warren
    • 5
  • T. Gregory Hislop
    • 1
    • 2
  • Richard P. Gallagher
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Cancer Control ResearchBritish Columbia Cancer AgencyVancouverCanada
  2. 2.School of Population and Public HealthUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  3. 3.Canada’s Michael Smith Genome Sciences CentreBritish Columbia Cancer AgencyVancouverCanada
  4. 4.Department of Biomedical Physiology and KinesiologySimon Fraser UniversityBurnabyCanada
  5. 5.Screening Mammography Program of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  6. 6.Departments of Oncology and MedicineMcGill UniversityMontrealCanada

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