The effect of coffee is related to estrogens, female sex hormones. Certain metabolic products of these hormones are known to be carcinogenic, and various components of coffee can alter the metabolism so that a woman acquires a better configuration of various estrogens. What's more, coffee contains caffeine, which also hampers the growth of cancer cells.
The cancer researcher Helena Jernström and her associates have studied the coffee-drinking habits of nearly 460 breast cancer patients being treated in Lund. The results show that the effect of coffee varies depending on which variant the women have of a gene called CYP1A2, which codes for an enzyme that metabolizes both estrogen and coffee. Half of the women had a variant called A/A, while the others had either A/C or C/C.
"Those women who had one of the C variants, and who had drunk at least three cups of coffee a day, developed breast cancer considerably more seldom than women with the A/A variant with the same coffee consumption. Their cancer risk was only two thirds of that of the other women.
A/A women who had drunk two or more cups of coffee a day received more ambiguous help from their coffee consumption. On the one hand, their cancer appeared considerably later than among women who had seldom or never drunk coffee at a mean age of 58 years instead of 48 years, unless they had taken hormone replacement therapy for menopausal symptoms, says Helena Jernström.. On the other hand, nearly 15 percent of these women had estrogen-insensitive (ER negative) tumors, which are more difficult to treat.
"The majority nevertheless had estrogen-sensitive and more readily treated tumors. And women who develop breast cancer at a higher age often do better than those who get it earlier in life," says Helena Jernström.
She stresses, however, that it is too early to make any dietary recommendations regarding coffee consumption.
"This is new information that needs to be corroborated in other studies before we can issue any recommendations. If coffee does in fact provide some protection against breast cancer, then women in such a coffee-drinking country as Sweden ought to have fewer cases of cancer than other countries. This is also the case, at least compared with the U.S. There the proportion of breast cancer cases in the population is considerably higher, and there people drink both more decaffeinated coffee and less coffee in general."
These research findings are published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention, with doctoral student Erika Bågeman as lead author.
Helena Jernström can be reached at phone: +46 (0)46-17 76 19; e-mail: email@example.com och firstname.lastname@example.org .
Pressofficer Ingela Björck, +46-46222 76 46; email@example.com
Collagen nanofibrils in mammalian tissues get stronger with exercise
14.12.2018 | University of Illinois College of Engineering
New discoveries predict ability to forecast dementia from single molecule
12.12.2018 | UT Southwestern Medical Center
The more objects we make "smart," from watches to entire buildings, the greater the need for these devices to store and retrieve massive amounts of data quickly without consuming too much power.
Millions of new memory cells could be part of a computer chip and provide that speed and energy savings, thanks to the discovery of a previously unobserved...
What if, instead of turning up the thermostat, you could warm up with high-tech, flexible patches sewn into your clothes - while significantly reducing your...
A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.
The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...
A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.
Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...
Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...
12.12.2018 | Event News
10.12.2018 | Event News
06.12.2018 | Event News
14.12.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering
14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
14.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy