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Post-diagnosis Cruciferous Vegetable Consumption and Breast Cancer Outcomes: a Report from the After Breast Cancer Pooling Project

Cruciferous vegetables are a major source of glucosinolate-derived bioactive compounds such as isothiocyanates, which have been shown in animal and in vitro studies to inhibit cancer growth and progression. Few studies have investigated cruciferous vegetable intake after diagnosis and breast cancer outcomes. Using data from the After Breast Cancer Pooling Project, which includes prospective data from U.S. and Chinese breast cancer survivors, we evaluated the association of cruciferous vegetables with breast cancer outcomes. Analyses included 11,390 women diagnosed with stage I-III invasive breast cancer (1990-2006) from four cohorts. Cruciferous vegetable intake (g/day) was assessed using food frequency questionnaires (mean of 22 months postdiagnosis). Study heterogeneity was evaluated by the Q statistic; hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were estimated using delayed-entry Cox regression models stratified by study. After a median follow-up of 9.0 years, 1,725 deaths and 1,421 recurrences were documented. In pooled analyses using study-specific quartiles, cruciferous vegetable intake was not associated with breast cancer outcomes, adjusting for known clinical prognostic factors and selected lifestyle factors. HRs (95% CIs) by increasing quartiles (reference = lowest quartile) were 1.08 (0.93-1.25), 1.01 (0.87-1.18), and 1.10 (0.95-1.28) for recurrence (P(trend) = 0.34) and 1.01 (0.88-1.15), 0.97 (0.84-1.11), and 0.99 (0.86-1.13) for total mortality (P(trend) = 0.84). No associations were observed for subgroups defined by estrogen receptor status, stage, or tamoxifen therapy. Cruciferous vegetable intake at approximately two years after diagnosis was not associated with recurrence or mortality. Our results do not support an association between postdiagnosis cruciferous vegetable intake and breast cancer outcomes.

Authors: Nechuta S; Caan BJ; Chen WY; Kwan ML; Lu W; Cai H; Poole EM; Flatt SW; Zheng W; Pierce JP; Shu XO

Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2013 Aug;22(8):1451-6. Epub 2013 Jun 13.

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