Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Link between migraines and reduced breast cancer risk confirmed in follow-up study

13.07.2009
The relationship between migraine headaches in women and a significant reduction in breast cancer risk has been confirmed in a follow-on study to landmark research published last year and conducted by scientists at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. The new study found a 26 percent reduced risk of breast cancer among both premenopausal and postmenopausal women with a clinical diagnosis of migraines.

The study appears in the July 2009 issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research. It was led by Christopher I. Li, M.D., Ph.D., a breast-cancer epidemiologist and associate member of the Hutchinson Center's Public Health Sciences Division. Li led the first-of-its-kind study linking migraines with breast cancer risk reduction that was published in the same journal last November.

This time researchers found that the risk reduction remained statistically similar regardless of a woman's menopausal status, her age at migraine diagnosis, use of prescription migraine medications or whether she avoided known migraine "triggers" such as alcohol consumption, smoking and taking hormone replacements. These triggers are also well-established breast cancer risk factors.

Some key differences between this study and the initial one that discovered the link include:

The sample size was more than four times larger this time – more than 4,500 cases and controls versus about 1,000 each in the first study – and was more diverse geographically, drawing women from five metropolitan areas instead of only one. "From an epidemiological perspective, having a larger and more diverse study in its underlying population helps in replicating the finding," Li said.

The age range of women studied was wider this time, 34-64 years of age versus 55-74 years old. "We were able to look at whether this association was seen among both pre-menopausal and post menopausal women," Li said. "In breast cancer this is relevant because there are certain risk factors that are different between older and younger women. In this study we saw the same reduction in breast cancer risk associated with a migraine history regardless of age."

Researchers were able to ascertain whether women in the study had lifestyle behaviors that are known migraine triggers – alcohol consumption, smoking and taking hormone replacement therapy. Researchers posited that perhaps women who had migraines drank and smoked less and didn't take hormone replacements. "But in this study we looked at women who never drank, never smoked and who also didn't use hormones and found the same association within each of those groups, suggesting that the association between migraine and reduced breast cancer risk may be independent of those other factors and may stand alone as a protective factor," he said.

What remains unknown is how migraine confers its apparent protection against breast cancer. "We know that migraine is definitely related to hormones and that's why we started looking at this in the first place," Li said. "We have different ideas about what may be going on but it's unclear exactly what the biological mechanisms are."

In the meantime, research on migraines and breast cancer continues. Li and his colleagues are conducting a follow-up investigation among the women in the first study to determine the types, timing, intensity and severity of their migraines in hopes that the data may elicit additional clues.

And, the research group has submitted a third study for publication that found that the association between migraine and reduced breast cancer risk holds up independent of whether women with migraine took non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin and ibuprofen. Earlier studies linked these medications to reduced breast cancer risk as well.

Dean Forbes | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.fhcrc.org

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Rutgers-led innovation could spur faster, cheaper, nano-based manufacturing
14.02.2018 | Rutgers University

nachricht New study from the University of Halle: How climate change alters plant growth
12.01.2018 | Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

Im Focus: Interference as a new method for cooling quantum devices

Theoretical physicists propose to use negative interference to control heat flow in quantum devices. Study published in Physical Review Letters

Quantum computer parts are sensitive and need to be cooled to very low temperatures. Their tiny size makes them particularly susceptible to a temperature...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Researchers invent tiny, light-powered wires to modulate brain's electrical signals

21.02.2018 | Life Sciences

The “Holy Grail” of peptide chemistry: Making peptide active agents available orally

21.02.2018 | Life Sciences

Atomic structure of ultrasound material not what anyone expected

21.02.2018 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>