Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Birth size and adult cancer risk

07.02.2005


Study shows larger babies have higher risk of certain cancers in adulthood

Babies who weighed more at birth had higher rates of digestive and lymphatic cancers in adulthood, according to a new study published February 7, 2005 in the online edition of the International Journal of Cancer, the official journal of the International Union Against Cancer (UICC). The study, available online at Wiley InterScience, also found that women who weighed more at birth had significantly higher rates of breast cancer before age 50, though much lower rates of endometrial cancer at all ages.

Medical experts have proposed associations between birth size and rates of adult cancer. To examine this hypothesis, researcher Valerie A. McCormack and colleagues at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and the Universities of Uppsala and Stockholm investigated overall and site-specific cancer incidence in relation to birth characteristics in a Swedish population-based cohort.



The cohort included 11,166 babies born between 1915 and 1929 at Uppsala Academic Hospital in Sweden. At birth, detailed obstetric notes were taken on maternal age, gestational age, birth order, birth weight, placental weight, birth length and head circumference. Follow-up of the cohort was done through linkages to the Swedish Cancer Registry, national censuses and the Swedish Register of Deaths and Migration.

With 2685 people (24 percent) in the cohort diagnosed with cancer between 1960 and 2001, larger birth size was associated with an increased risk of certain adult cancers. A standard deviation increase in birth weight (which was 450g at 40 weeks gestation) was associated with a 17 percent increase in lymphatic cancers, and a 13 percent increase in digestive cancers, including stomach, colorectal and pancreatic, though no association was seen between higher birth weight and five other non reproductive-related cancer sites.

Reproductive-related cancers accounted for nearly half of all cancer in women and nearly a third of all cancer in men. For women, a strong association was found between breast cancer in women under age 50 and larger birth size. Women in the highest category of birth weight (4kg or greater) were four times as likely to get breast cancer before age 50, compared with women in the lowest category (less than 3 kg). On the other hand, women who were large at birth were only half as likely to get endometrial cancer compared to their smallest counterparts. For men, the most common reproductive-related cancer, of the prostate gland, was analyzed but no association to birth factors was found.

While the researchers note that some of their findings may have arisen by chance, it is plausible that the associations between birth weight and adult cancer are related to some aspects of the fetal environment or the number of cells at risk of carcinogenesis. "We have found some evidence supporting the hypothesis that larger birth size is associated with increased risk of certain adult cancers," the authors report. "However, our findings suggest that positive associations were not uniform across all cancer sites, but were particular to just a few sites. Furthermore, our findings generate the hypothesis, which merits further study, that rates of endometrial cancer are lower in women who had higher birth rates."

Since previous studies have found associations between smaller birth size and increased risks of adult heart disease and diabetes, the authors conclude, "Both circulatory disease and cancer need to be considered in determining the net effect of prenatal influences on adult morbidity and mortality."

David Greenberg | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.interscience.wiley.com/journal/ijc
http://www.wiley.com

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Smart Data Transformation – Surfing the Big Wave
02.12.2016 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Angewandte Informationstechnik FIT

nachricht Climate change could outpace EPA Lake Champlain protections
18.11.2016 | University of Vermont

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: Significantly more productivity in USP lasers

In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.

Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Closing the carbon loop

08.12.2016 | Life Sciences

Applicability of dynamic facilitation theory to binary hard disk systems

08.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

Scientists track chemical and structural evolution of catalytic nanoparticles in 3-D

08.12.2016 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>