The ratio of serum eicosapentaenoic acid to arachidonic acid and risk of cancer death in a Japanese community: The Hisayama Study

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Author(s)

    • Nagata Masaharu
    • Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University|Department of Medicine and Clinical Science, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University
    • Ninomiya Toshiharu
    • Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University|Center for Cohort Studies, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University
    • Hata Jun
    • Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University|Department of Medicine and Clinical Science, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University|Center for Cohort Studies, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University
    • Hirakawa Yoichiro
    • Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University|Department of Medicine and Clinical Science, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University
    • Mukai Naoko
    • Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University|Department of Medicine and Clinical Science, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University|Center for Cohort Studies, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University
    • Yoshida Daigo
    • Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University|Center for Cohort Studies, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University
    • Ohara Tomoyuki
    • Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University|Department of Neuropsychiatry, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University
    • Kishimoto Hiro
    • Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University
    • Kitazono Takanari
    • Department of Medicine and Clinical Science, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University|Center for Cohort Studies, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University

Abstract

<p><i>Background:</i> Whether the intake of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) or arachidonic acid (AA) affects the risk of cancer remains unclear, and the association between the serum EPA:AA ratio and cancer risk has not been fully evaluated in general populations.</p><p><i>Methods:</i> A total of 3098 community-dwelling subjects aged ≥40 years were followed up for 9.6 years (2002–2012). The levels of the serum EPA:AA ratio were categorized into quartiles (<0.29, 0.29–0.41, 0.42–0.60, and >0.60). The risk estimates were computed using a Cox proportional hazards model. The same analyses were conducted for the serum docosahexaenoic acid to arachidonic acid (DHA:AA) ratio and individual fatty acid concentrations.</p><p><i>Results:</i> During the follow-up period, 121 subjects died of cancer. Age- and sex-adjusted cancer mortality increased with lower serum EPA:AA ratio levels (<i>P</i> trend<0.05). In the multivariable-adjusted analysis, the subjects in the first quartile of the serum EPA:AA ratio had a 1.93-fold (95% confidence interval, 1.15–3.22) greater risk of cancer death than those in the fourth quartile. Lower serum EPA concentrations were marginally associated with higher cancer mortality (<i>P</i> trend<0.11), but the serum DHA or AA concentrations and the serum DHA:AA ratio were not (all <i>P</i> trend>0.37). With regard to site-specific cancers, lower serum EPA:AA ratio was associated with a higher risk of death from liver cancer. However, no such associations were detected for deaths from other cancers.</p><p><i>Conclusions:</i> These findings suggest that decreased level of the serum EPA:AA ratio is a significant risk factor for cancer death in the general Japanese population.</p>

Journal

  • Journal of Epidemiology

    Journal of Epidemiology 27(12), 578-583, 2017

    Japan Epidemiological Association

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