Tumor Biology

, Volume 35, Issue 11, pp 11065–11073 | Cite as

Nonoccupational physical activity and risk of ovarian cancer: a meta-analysis

  • Shanliang Zhong
  • Lin Chen
  • Mengmeng Lv
  • Tengfei Ma
  • Xiaohui Zhang
  • Jianhua Zhao
Research Article


Previous studies concerning the association between nonoccupational physical activity (PA) and risk of ovarian cancer yielded mixed results. We investigated the association by performing a meta-analysis. Relevant studies were identified by searching PubMed and EMBASE to June 2014. We calculated the summary relative risks (RRs) and 95 % confidence intervals (CIs) using random-effects models. The dose–response relationship was assessed by restricted cubic spline model and multivariate random-effect meta-regression. Nine cohort studies and ten case–control studies involving 730,703 participants and 9,459 cases of ovarian cancer were selected for meta-analysis. The analyses showed that individuals who participated in any amount of nonoccupational PA had a RR of 0.92 (95 % CI = 0.84–1.00) for risk of ovarian cancer. Those who participated in high or moderate nonoccupational PA had a RR of ovarian cancer risk of 0.89 (95 % CI = 0.79–1.01) and 0.91 (95 % CI = 0.85–0.99), respectively. Stratifying by study design and cancer subtype (borderline and invasive tumors), inverse association was only found in case–control studies. A linear but not significant dose–response relationship was found between nonoccupational PA and ovarian cancer risk. In conclusion, a weak inverse association exists between nonoccupational PA and the risk of ovarian cancer. Regarding the significant heterogeneity among included studies, confirmation in further prospective cohort studies with more accurate assessment of PA level is essential.


Physical activity Exercise Ovarian Cancer Incidence 



This study was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (81272470).

Conflicts of interest


Supplementary material

13277_2014_2385_MOESM1_ESM.xls (26 kb)
Table S1 Methodological quality of the case-control studies, based on the NOS for assessing the quality of epidemiological studies. (XLS 26 kb)
13277_2014_2385_MOESM2_ESM.xls (20 kb)
Table S2 Methodological quality of the cohort studies, based on the NOS for assessing the quality of epidemiological studies. (XLS 20 kb)


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Copyright information

© International Society of Oncology and BioMarkers (ISOBM) 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shanliang Zhong
    • 1
  • Lin Chen
    • 2
  • Mengmeng Lv
    • 3
  • Tengfei Ma
    • 1
  • Xiaohui Zhang
    • 1
  • Jianhua Zhao
    • 1
  1. 1.Center of Clinical Laboratory ScienceJiangsu Cancer Hospital Affiliated to Nanjing Medical UniversityNanjingChina
  2. 2.Departments of OncologyXuzhou Medical CollegeXuzhouChina
  3. 3.The Fourth Clinical CollegeNanjing Medical UniversityNanjingChina

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