Research Papers:

Folate intake and the risk of endometrial cancer: A meta-analysis

Li Du _, Yulong Wang, Hang Zhang, Hong Zhang and Ying Gao

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Oncotarget. 2016; 7:85176-85184. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.13211

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Li Du1,2, Yulong Wang2, Hang Zhang2, Hong Zhang1, Ying Gao2

1State Key Laboratory of Genetic Engineering and Institute of Biostatistics, School of Life Sciences, Fudan University, Shanghai, China

2Key Laboratory of Nutrition and Metabolism, Institute for Nutritional Sciences, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai, China

Correspondence to:

Ying Gao, email: [email protected]

Keywords: folate, intake, endometrial cancer, risk, meta-analysis

Received: June 16, 2016     Accepted: October 26, 2016     Published: November 08, 2016


Background: Folate may involve in various aspects of carcinogenesis. However, the relationship between folate intake and risk of many cancers, including endometrial cancer, is still inconclusive. We conducted a meta-analysis to systematically review the association.

Methods: Relevant studies were searched through three electronic databases (PubMed, Embase, and Web of Science) up to April 4, 2016. Population based prospective or case-control studies involving in investigating folate intake and risk of endometrial cancer were considered as eligible. Three investigators independently extracted data. Controversies were reconciled by discussing with a fourth investigator. Effect sizes of studies were pooled via a random effects model. Thereafter to explore the origin of heterogeneity among results of studies, a mixed effects model was employed with study design and dose of folate intake taken as covariates.

Results: Nine case-control studies and five cohort studies were included in the current meta-analysis. The result pooled from the highest category suggested a marginal negative association between folate intake and risk of endometrial cancer (OR=0.89 95% CI: 0.76-1.05). Based on the mixed effects model, in the highest category, the risk showed an increasing trend along with increment of folate intake (5% risk increase per 100μg/d, P=0.01).

Conclusion: A marginally negative association was observed between folate intake and endometrial cancer, which might subject to a threshold effect. More finely designed perspective studies or randomized trials are still needed to confirm the association.

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