Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Antioxidant Selenium Offers No Heart-Disease Protection


Selenium does not protect against cardiovascular disease, despite its documented antioxidant and chemopreventive properties, analysis of a randomized placebo-controlled clinical trial covering 13 years has shown.

The selenium-CVD association was a secondary endpoint in the Nutritional Prevention of Cancer Trial, which was designed primarily to determine if selenium supplementation could prevent the recurrence of non-melanoma skin cancer.

Results of the trial, the only large randomized clinical trial to date to examine selenium supplementation alone in the prevention of CVD, appear in the April 15 issue of the American Journal of Epidemiology. Saverio Stranges, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor of social and preventive medicine in the School of Public Health and Health Professions, University at Buffalo, is first author.

"Our results extend previous research based on smaller intervention trials focusing on cardiovascular risk factors," said Stranges. "Our findings are consistent with those from previous studies that have shown no beneficial effect of selenium supplementation in combination with other antioxidants on the primary prevention of cardiovascular disease."

Several antioxidants, vitamins C and E in particular, that were thought to play a role in preventing heart disease based on observational studies have turned out not to be protective in randomized clinical trials, and selenium now has joined this group.

The main findings of this report focus on the 1,004 participants in the study, conducted from 1983-96, who were free of cardiovascular disease when they were recruited. Participants came from seven dermatology clinics in low selenium areas of the eastern United States: Augusta and Macon, Ga.; Columbia, S.C.; Miami, Fla.; Wilson and Greenville, N. C.; and Newington, Conn.

Enrollees were assigned randomly to take a tablet containing 200 micrograms of selenium daily or a placebo. Information on sociodemographics, health habits, education and body mass index also was collected.

Participants provided blood samples at their respective clinics twice a year and reported any new illnesses or medications. Individuals were followed for an average of 7.6 years.

Results showed no association between selenium supplementation on any of the endpoints studied: coronary heart disease, stroke or deaths from cardiovascular disease, Stranges said. There also was no difference in the endpoints based on the level of selenium at baseline. In addition, the lack of significant association with CVD endpoints was confirmed even in the 246 participants who had CVD at baseline. (This data does not appear in the published manuscript.)

"These results must be interpreted cautiously," said Stranges, "because they result from exploratory analyses, although from the largest randomized clinical trial available that has selenium only as the intervention. However, this report adds important information to our knowledge on the role of selenium in cardiovascular-disease prevention, indicating no overall benefit of supplementation by selenium alone in prevention of cardiovascular disease."

Additional contributors to the study were James R. Marshal, Ph.D., Raj Natarajan and Mary E. Reid, Ph.D., from Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo; Maurizio Trevisan, M.D., and Richard P. Donahue, M.P.H., Ph.D., of the UB School of Public Health and Health Professions; Gerald F. Combs, Jr., Ph.D., from the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center in Grand Forks, N.D.; Eduardo Farinaro, M.D., of "Federico II" University of Naples Medical School, Naples, Italy, and the late Larry C. Clark, M.P.H., Ph.D., a major contributor to research on selenium and prostate cancer.

The University at Buffalo is a premier research-intensive public university, the largest and most comprehensive campus in the State University of New York.

Lois Baker | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Advanced analysis of brain structure shape may track progression to Alzheimer's disease
26.10.2016 | Massachusetts General Hospital

nachricht Indian roadside refuse fires produce toxic rainbow
26.10.2016 | Duke University

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Etching Microstructures with Lasers

Ultrafast lasers have introduced new possibilities in engraving ultrafine structures, and scientists are now also investigating how to use them to etch microstructures into thin glass. There are possible applications in analytics (lab on a chip) and especially in electronics and the consumer sector, where great interest has been shown.

This new method was born of a surprising phenomenon: irradiating glass in a particular way with an ultrafast laser has the effect of making the glass up to a...

Im Focus: Light-driven atomic rotations excite magnetic waves

Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion

Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

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

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Greater Range and Longer Lifetime

26.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VDI presents International Bionic Award of the Schauenburg Foundation

26.10.2016 | Awards Funding

3-D-printed magnets

26.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

More VideoLinks >>>