Publications by authors named "Shelley S Tworoger"

318 Publications

Religion and Spirituality among American Indian, South Asian, Black, Hispanic/Latina, and White Women in the Study on Stress, Spirituality, and Health.

J Sci Study Relig 2021 Mar 22;60(1):198-215. Epub 2020 Dec 22.

National Consortium on Psychosocial Stress, Spirituality, and Health, Boston, MA.

Social scientists have increasingly recognized the lack of diversity in survey research on American religion, resulting in a dearth of data on religion and spirituality (R/S) in understudied racial and ethnic groups. At the same time, epidemiological studies have increasingly diversified their racial and ethnic representation, but have collected few R/S measures to date. With a particular focus on American Indian and South Asian women (in addition to Blacks, Hispanic/Latinas, and white women), this study introduces a new effort among religion and epidemiology researchers, the Study on Stress, Spirituality, and Health (SSSH). This multi-cohort study provides some of the first estimates of R/S beliefs and practices among American Indians and U.S. South Asians, and offers new insight into salient beliefs and practices of diverse racial/ethnic and religious communities.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jssr.12695DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8127946PMC
March 2021

Circulating amino acids and amino acid-related metabolites and risk of breast cancer among predominantly premenopausal women.

NPJ Breast Cancer 2021 May 18;7(1):54. Epub 2021 May 18.

Channing Division of Network Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.

Known modifiable risk factors account for a small fraction of premenopausal breast cancers. We investigated associations between pre-diagnostic circulating amino acid and amino acid-related metabolites (N = 207) and risk of breast cancer among predominantly premenopausal women of the Nurses' Health Study II using conditional logistic regression (1057 cases, 1057 controls) and multivariable analyses evaluating all metabolites jointly. Eleven metabolites were associated with breast cancer risk (q-value < 0.2). Seven metabolites remained associated after adjustment for established risk factors (p-value < 0.05) and were selected by at least one multivariable modeling approach: higher levels of 2-aminohippuric acid, kynurenic acid, piperine (all three with q-value < 0.2), DMGV and phenylacetylglutamine were associated with lower breast cancer risk (e.g., piperine: OR (95%CI) = 0.84 (0.77-0.92)) while higher levels of creatine and C40:7 phosphatidylethanolamine (PE) plasmalogen were associated with increased breast cancer risk (e.g., C40:7 PE plasmalogen: OR (95%CI) = 1.11 (1.01-1.22)). Five amino acids and amino acid-related metabolites (2-aminohippuric acid, DMGV, kynurenic acid, phenylacetylglutamine, and piperine) were inversely associated, while one amino acid and a phospholipid (creatine and C40:7 PE plasmalogen) were positively associated with breast cancer risk among predominately premenopausal women, independent of established breast cancer risk factors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41523-021-00262-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8131633PMC
May 2021

Prediagnosis and postdiagnosis leisure time physical activity and survival following diagnosis with ovarian cancer.

Int J Cancer 2021 May 8. Epub 2021 May 8.

Department of Cancer Epidemiology, H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, Tampa, Florida, USA.

Little is known about the influence of prediagnosis and postdiagnosis physical activity on ovarian cancer survival. We investigated this association in two large cohorts, the Nurses' Health Study (NHS) and NHSII. Analyses included 1461 women with confirmed invasive, epithelial ovarian cancer and data on physical activity. Cox regression models were used to estimate hazard ratios (HR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) for ovarian cancer-specific mortality. Ovarian cancer-specific mortality was not associated with physical activity reported 1-8 years before diagnosis overall (≥7.5 vs <1.5 MET-hours/week, HR = 0.96), for high-grade serous/ poorly differentiated tumors, or non-serous/ low-grade serous tumors (P-heterogeneity = .45). An inverse association was observed for activity 1-4 years after diagnosis (≥7.5 vs <1.5 MET-hours/week, HR = 0.67, 95%CI: 0.48-0.94), with similar results by histotype (P-heterogeneity = .53). Women who decreased their activity from ≥7.5 MET-hours/week 1-8 years before diagnosis to <7.5 MET-hours/week 1-4 years after diagnosis, compared to those with <7.5 MET-hours/week across periods, had a 49% increased risk of death (HR = 1.49, 95%CI: 1.07-2.08). Physical activity after, but not before, ovarian cancer diagnosis was associated with better prognosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ijc.33676DOI Listing
May 2021

Overview of the Microbiome Among Nurses study (Micro-N) as an example of prospective characterization of the microbiome within cohort studies.

Nat Protoc 2021 Jun 21;16(6):2724-2731. Epub 2021 Apr 21.

Harvard Chan Microbiome in Public Health Center, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA.

A lack of prospective studies has been a major barrier for assessing the role of the microbiome in human health and disease on a population-wide scale. To address this significant knowledge gap, we have launched a large-scale collection targeting fecal and oral microbiome specimens from 20,000 women within the Nurses' Health Study II cohort (the Microbiome Among Nurses study, or Micro-N). Leveraging the rich epidemiologic data that have been repeatedly collected from this cohort since 1989; the established biorepository of archived blood, urine, buccal cell, and tumor tissue specimens; the available genetic and biomarker data; the cohort's ongoing follow-up; and the BIOM-Mass microbiome research platform, Micro-N furnishes unparalleled resources for future prospective studies to interrogate the interplay between host, environmental factors, and the microbiome in human health. These prospectively collected materials will provide much-needed evidence to infer causality in microbiome-associated outcomes, paving the way toward development of microbiota-targeted modulators, preventives, diagnostics and therapeutics. Here, we describe a generalizable, scalable and cost-effective platform used for stool and oral microbiome specimen and metadata collection in the Micro-N study as an example of how prospective studies of the microbiome may be carried out.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41596-021-00519-zDOI Listing
June 2021

The association of resistance training with risk of ovarian cancer.

Cancer Med 2021 04 11;10(7):2489-2495. Epub 2021 Mar 11.

Department of Cancer Epidemiology, Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, FL, USA.

Background: Increasing evidence, including multiple putative inflammatory risk factors (e.g., c-reactive protein, and adiposity), supports that inflammation plays an important role in ovarian carcinogenesis. Resistance training (RT) is associated with lower levels of circulating inflammatory markers, independent of physical activity.

Methods: We evaluated the relationship between RT and risk of ovarian cancer accounting for other physical activity (e.g., walking) in two large prospective cohorts, the Nurses' Health Study (NHS) and NHSII.

Key Results: In total, analyses included 42,005 NHS participants (2000-2016) and 67,289 NHSII participants (2001-2017) with RT assessed every 4 years. Multivariable Cox proportional hazards models were used to estimate hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) of RT with ovarian cancer risk overall and by tumor subtype, adjusting for known and putative ovarian cancer risk factors. We identified a total of 609 cases over 1,748,884 person-years. No association was observed with overall ovarian cancer risk (RT ≥60 vs 0 min/wk, HR = 0.95, 95%CI: 0.74-1.22) or by histotype (comparable HR = 0.86 and 0.98 for type I and II tumors, respectively). Results did not differ by body mass index (Pinteraction = 0.97), or other physical activity (Pinteraction = 0.31).

Conclusions & Inferences: We observed no evidence that moderate levels of RT were associated with risk of ovarian cancer. Further investigations are required to confirm these findings.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/cam4.3804DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7982607PMC
April 2021

Prospective Analyses of Lifestyle Factors Related to Energy Balance and Ovarian Cancer Risk by Infiltration of Tumor-Associated Macrophages.

Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 2021 May 2;30(5):920-926. Epub 2021 Mar 2.

Division of Public Health Sciences, Program in Epidemiology, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, Washington.

Background: Lifestyle factors related to energy balance have been associated with ovarian cancer risk and influence the tumor immune microenvironment, including tumor-associated macrophages (TAM). However, no studies have assessed whether these factors differentially impact ovarian cancer risk by TAM densities.

Methods: We conducted a prospective analysis in the Nurses' Health Studies to examine the associations of physical activity, sitting time, and a food-based empirical dietary inflammatory pattern (EDIP) score with invasive epithelial ovarian cancer risk by TAM density assessed by immunohistochemistry. We considered density of CD68 (marker of total TAMs) and CD163 (marker of pro-carcinogenic M2-type TAMs), and their ratios. We used multivariable Cox proportional hazards regression to calculate hazard ratios (HR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) of exposures with risk of ovarian tumors with high versus low TAMs, including analyses stratified by body mass index.

Results: Analyses included 312 incident ovarian cancer cases with TAM measurements. Physical activity, sitting time, and EDIP score were not differentially associated with ovarian cancer risk by TAM densities ( > 0.05). Among overweight and obese women, higher EDIP score was associated with increased risk of CD163 low-density tumors (HR comparing extreme tertiles, 1.57; 95% CI, 0.88-2.80; = 0.01), but not CD163 high-density tumors (comparable HR, 1.16; 95% CI, 0.73-1.86; = 0.24), though this difference was not statistically significant ( = 0.22).

Conclusions: We did not observe differential associations between lifestyle factors and ovarian cancer risk by TAM densities.

Impact: Future investigations examining the interplay between other ovarian cancer risk factors and the tumor immune microenvironment may help provide insight into ovarian cancer etiology.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-20-1686DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8102357PMC
May 2021

Early life exposure to tobacco smoke and ovarian cancer risk in adulthood.

Int J Epidemiol 2021 Feb 27. Epub 2021 Feb 27.

Department of Cancer Epidemiology, H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, Tampa, FL, USA.

Background: Ovarian cancer risk in adulthood may be affected by early life exposure to tobacco smoke. We investigated this relationship in two large prospective cohorts, the Nurses' Health Study (NHS) and NHSII.

Methods: In total, analyses included 110 305 NHS participants (1976-2016) and 112 859 NHSII participants (1989-2017). Self-reported early life smoking exposures were queried at baseline or follow-up questionnaires. Cox proportional hazards models were used to estimate hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for risk of ovarian cancer overall and by tumour histotype.

Results: Overall, ovarian cancer risk was not different among participants whose mothers did versus did not smoke during pregnancy (HR = 1.05, 95% CI: 0.87-1.27); however, an increased risk was observed among women who themselves were never smokers (HR = 1.38, 95% CI: 1.05-1.81) but not among ever smokers (HR = 0.86, 95% CI: 0.66-1.14; Pheterogeneity = 0.02). Compared with women who never smoked, ovarian cancer risk was similar for women who started to smoke at age <18 (HR = 0.98, 95% CI: 0.86-1.11) or ≥18 (HR = 1.02, 95% CI: 0.93-1.12). These associations did not differ by histotype (Pheterogeneity ≥0.35). Parental smoking in the home during childhood/adolescence was related to a 15% increased risk of ovarian cancer in adulthood (HR = 1.15, 95% CI: 1.04-1.27) and this association was suggestively stronger among women with non-serous/low-grade serous tumours (HR = 1.28, 95% CI: 1.02-1.61) versus high-grade serous/poorly differentiated tumours (HR = 1.09, 95% CI: 0.93-1.28; Pheterogeneity = 0.25).

Conclusions: Exposure to parental tobacco smoke in the home, but not early initiation of smoking, was associated with a modest elevated risk of ovarian cancer. Further investigations are required to confirm these findings and elucidate underlying mechanisms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ije/dyab018DOI Listing
February 2021

Intrauterine device use and risk of ovarian cancer: Results from the New England Case-Control study and Nurses' Health Studies.

Int J Cancer 2021 Jul 17;149(1):75-83. Epub 2021 Mar 17.

Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Results of studies assessing intrauterine device (IUD) use and ovarian cancer risk are inconsistent. We examined the association between IUD use, including duration, type and timing of use, and ovarian cancer risk using three population-based studies. Data from the New England Case-Control Study (NEC) and two prospective cohort studies, the Nurses' Health Studies (NHS/NHSII), were included in the analysis. Information on IUD use was collected by in-person interview in NEC and by biennial questionnaire in NHS/NHSII. We used unconditional logistic regression to calculate odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) in NEC and Cox regression to calculate hazard ratios (HR) and 95% CI in NHS/NHSII. We used meta-analysis to combine the NEC and the pooled NHS/NHSII results. Overall, IUD use was not associated with epithelial ovarian cancer risk (OR = 0.96, 95% CI: 0.81-1.14 in NEC; HR = 0.89, 95% CI: 0.69-1.15 in NHS/NHSII; combined RR = 0.94, 95% CI: 0.81-1.08). Among IUD users, older age at first use was associated with increased ovarian cancer risk (P-trend = .03). We did not observe significant associations by IUD type or duration of use. In conclusion, IUD use was not associated with ovarian cancer risk in our study.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ijc.33531DOI Listing
July 2021

Circulating Biomarkers of Inflammation and Ovarian Cancer Risk in the Nurses' Health Studies.

Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 2021 Apr 9;30(4):710-718. Epub 2021 Feb 9.

Department of Cancer Epidemiology, H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, Tampa, Florida.

Background: Chronic inflammation is a well-established mechanism of ovarian carcinogenesis; however, the specific immunogenic processes influencing ovarian tumor development remain unclear. In a case-control study nested within the Nurses' Health Study (NHS) and the NHSII, we examined the association between six inflammatory chemokines and cytokines [B-cell activating factor (BAFF), C-X-C motif chemokine ligand 13 (CXCL13), IL8, soluble(s)IL2-receptor-α(Rα), sIL6Rα] and epithelial ovarian cancer risk.

Methods: Among 299 epithelial ovarian cancer cases and 334 matched controls, six inflammatory biomarkers were measured in plasma collected 1-24 years before diagnosis or index date using two custom multiplex Luminex panels. ORs and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were estimated for the association between each biomarker and risk using multivariable conditional logistic regression with adjustment for relevant confounders. We additionally assessed heterogeneity in the risk associations by histotype [high-grade serous carcinoma (HGSC) vs. non-HGSC], body mass index, smoking status, menopausal status, and aspirin use.

Results: Women with the highest versus lowest quartile (Q) levels of CXCL13 had a 72% increased ovarian cancer risk (OR = 1.72; 95% CI = 1.04-2.83; = 0.007). The positive association with CXCL13 was stronger in magnitude for non-HGSC, overweight or obese women, and postmenopausal women, although only menopausal status demonstrated statistically significant heterogeneity ( = 0.04). The remaining biomarkers were not associated with risk.

Conclusions: This first evidence that prediagnostic CXCL13, a B-cell chemoattractant, is associated with an increased risk of epithelial ovarian cancer expands current understanding of the role of inflammation in ovarian carcinogenesis.

Impact: CXCL13 may represent a novel biomarker for ovarian cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-20-1390DOI Listing
April 2021

Utilizing a large-scale biobanking registry to assess patient priorities and preferences for cancer research and education.

PLoS One 2021 5;16(2):e0246686. Epub 2021 Feb 5.

Department of Cancer Epidemiology, Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, Florida, United States of America.

Patients consented to biobanking studies typically do not specify research conducted on their samples and data. Our objective was to gauge cancer biobanking participant preferences on research topics. Patient-participants of a biobanking study at a comprehensive cancer center who had an appointment within the last 5 years, had a valid email address, and with a last known vital status of alive, were emailed a newsletter containing a link to a survey about preferences and priorities for research. The survey assessed demographics and research interest in three domains: cancer site, cancer-related topics, and issues faced by cancer patients. 37,384 participants were contacted through email to participate in the survey. 16,158 participants (43.2%) opened the email, 1,626 (4.3% overall, 10% of those who opened the email) completed the survey, and 1,291 (79.4% of those who completed the survey) selected at least one research priority. Among those who selected at least one research priorities for cancer-relevant topics, the most commonly selected were cancer treatment (66%), clinical trials (54%), and cancer prevention (53%). Similarly, the most selected priorities for cancer-related issues faced by patients were physical side effects of cancer (57%), talking to the oncologist (53%), and emotional challenges due to cancer (47%). Differences by gender were observed, with females reporting more interest in research generally. Cancer patients participating in a biobanking protocol prioritized research on treatments, prevention and side effects, which varied by gender.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0246686PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7864448PMC
February 2021

IgA transcytosis and antigen recognition govern ovarian cancer immunity.

Nature 2021 Mar 3;591(7850):464-470. Epub 2021 Feb 3.

Department of Immunology, H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, Tampa, FL, USA.

Most ovarian cancers are infiltrated by prognostically relevant activated T cells, yet exhibit low response rates to immune checkpoint inhibitors. Memory B cell and plasma cell infiltrates have previously been associated with better outcomes in ovarian cancer, but the nature and functional relevance of these responses are controversial. Here, using 3 independent cohorts that in total comprise 534 patients with high-grade serous ovarian cancer, we show that robust, protective humoral responses are dominated by the production of polyclonal IgA, which binds to polymeric IgA receptors that are universally expressed on ovarian cancer cells. Notably, tumour B-cell-derived IgA redirects myeloid cells against extracellular oncogenic drivers, which causes tumour cell death. In addition, IgA transcytosis through malignant epithelial cells elicits transcriptional changes that antagonize the RAS pathway and sensitize tumour cells to cytolytic killing by T cells, which also contributes to hindering malignant progression. Thus, tumour-antigen-specific and -antigen-independent IgA responses antagonize the growth of ovarian cancer by governing coordinated tumour cell, T cell and B cell responses. These findings provide a platform for identifying targets that are spontaneously recognized by intratumoural B-cell-derived antibodies, and suggest that immunotherapies that augment B cell responses may be more effective than approaches that focus on T cells, particularly for malignancies that are resistant to checkpoint inhibitors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41586-020-03144-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7969354PMC
March 2021

C-reactive Protein and Risk of OSA in Four US Cohorts.

Chest 2021 Jun 30;159(6):2439-2448. Epub 2021 Jan 30.

Division of Sleep Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA; Division of Sleep and Circadian Disorders, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA.

Background: Individuals with OSA have elevated levels of inflammatory markers, but no prospective study has examined the role of inflammation in the development of OSA.

Research Question: Is C-reactive protein (CRP) prospectively associated with risk of developing OSA?

Study Design And Methods: We followed 1,882 women from the Nurses' Health Study (NHS) (2002-2012), 3,854 women from Nurses' Health Study II (NHSII) (1995-2013), 3,075 men from the Health Professionals Follow-up Study (HPFS) (1996-2012), and 1,919 women and men from the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) (2000-2012) who did not have diagnosed OSA at baseline and for whom CRP levels were available. In NHS/NHSII/HPFS, physician-diagnosed OSA was self-reported. In MESA, at-home polysomnography was performed and OSA was identified as an apnea-hypopnea index ≥ 30. Logistic regression was used to estimate the OR for OSA risk according to baseline CRP level, adjusted for multiple inflammation-related factors.

Results: After multivariable adjustment not including BMI, the pooled OR for OSA risk per doubling of baseline CRP level was 1.24 (95% CI, 1.18-1.30). Additional adjustment for BMI substantially attenuated the association (pooled OR, 1.07; 95% CI, 1.01-1.12). The fully adjusted association was consistently stronger in individuals < 55 vs ≥ 55 years of age (P interaction = .01), in individuals with BMI < 25 vs ≥ 25 kg/m (P interaction = .02), and in pre- vs postmenopausal women (P interaction = .002). CRP was more strongly associated with risk of OSA associated with excessive daytime sleepiness, high airway collapsibility, and low arousal threshold (P heterogeneity < .05).

Interpretation: Higher CRP was prospectively associated with increased OSA risk, particularly among younger individuals, underweight/normal-weight individuals, or premenopausal women. The differential associations by OSA phenotype/endotype suggest possible mechanisms through which inflammation operates to modulate OSA risk. Given our reliance on a single CRP level measured a decade before OSA assessment, future studies with repeated CRP measurements are warranted to confirm these prospective associations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chest.2021.01.060DOI Listing
June 2021

Genital powder use and risk of uterine cancer: A pooled analysis of prospective studies.

Int J Cancer 2021 Jun 1;148(11):2692-2701. Epub 2021 Feb 1.

Epidemiology Branch, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, USA.

When powder is applied to the genital area, it has the potential to reach internal reproductive organs and promote carcinogenesis by irritating and inflaming exposed tissues. Although many studies have considered the association between genital powder use and ovarian cancer risk, the relationship between genital powder use and uterine cancer is less well-studied. We pooled data from four large, prospective cohorts (the Nurses' Health Study, the Nurses' Health Study II, the Sister Study and the Women's Health Initiative - Observational Study). We used Cox proportional hazards models to estimate hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs), adjusting for prespecified confounders. In total, 209 185 women were included, with 37% reporting ever genital powder use. Over a mean 14.5 years of follow-up, 3272 invasive uterine cancers were diagnosed. There was no overall association between ever genital powder use and uterine cancer (HR = 1.01, 95% CI: 0.94-1.09), with little difference observed for frequent (≥1 times/week) vs never use (HR = 1.05, 95% CI: 0.95-1.16; P-for-trend = .46). Long-term use (>20 years; HR = 1.12, 95% CI: 0.96-1.31; P-for-trend = 0.14) was associated with a small, but not statistically significant, increase in risk, compared to never use. There were not clear differences by uterine cancer histologic subtypes or across strata of relevant covariates, including race/ethnicity, follow-up time, menopausal status and body mass index. The results of this large, pooled analysis do not support a relationship between the use of genital powder and uterine cancer, although the positive associations observed for long-term use may merit further consideration.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ijc.33470DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8106926PMC
June 2021

Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and Likelihood of Hormone Therapy Use among Women in the Nurses' Health Study II: A 26-Year Prospective Analysis.

Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 2021 Mar 21;30(3):492-498. Epub 2020 Dec 21.

Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts.

Background: Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is associated with higher risk of certain chronic diseases, including ovarian cancer, but underlying mechanisms remain unclear. Although prior work has linked menopausal hormone therapy (MHT) use with elevated ovarian cancer risk, little research considers PTSD to likelihood of MHT use. We examined whether PTSD was prospectively associated with greater likelihood of initiating MHT use over 26 years.

Methods: Using data from the Nurses' Health Study II, with trauma and PTSD (symptoms and onset date) assessed by screener in 2008 and MHT assessed via biennial survey (from 1989), we performed Cox proportional regression models with women contributing person-years from age 36 years. Relevant covariates were assessed at biennial surveys. We considered potential effect modification by race/ethnicity, age at baseline, and period (1989-2002 vs. 2003-2015).

Results: Over follow-up, 22,352 of 43,025 women reported initiating MHT use. For example, compared with women with no trauma, the HR for initiating MHT was 1.18 for those with trauma/1-3 PTSD symptoms [95% confidence interval (CI), 1.13-1.22] and 1.31 for those with trauma/4-7 PTSD symptoms (95% CI, 1.25-1.36; trend < 0.001), adjusting for sociodemographic factors. Associations were maintained when adjusting for reproductive factors and health conditions. We found evidence of effect modification by age at baseline.

Conclusions: Trauma and number of PTSD symptoms were associated with greater likelihood of initiating MHT use in a dose-response manner.

Impact: MHT may be a pathway linking PTSD to altered chronic disease risk. It is important to understand why women with PTSD initiate MHT use.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-20-1227DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8049954PMC
March 2021

Oral contraceptive use by formulation and endometrial cancer risk among women born in 1947-1964: The Nurses' Health Study II, a prospective cohort study.

Eur J Epidemiol 2020 Dec 17. Epub 2020 Dec 17.

Division of Cancer Epidemiology, German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Heidelberg, Germany.

Oral contraceptives (OCs) have been associated with long-term lower endometrial cancer risk; relatively little is known about associations with more recent OC formulations and associations with longer-term risk. A total of 107,069 women from the Nurses' Health Study II recalled OC use from age 13 to baseline (1989); biennial questionnaires updated data on OC use until 2009. OCs were classified by estrogen and progestin type, dose, and potency based on reported brand. 864 incident endometrial cancer cases were identified through 2017. Multivariable Cox proportional hazards models estimated hazard ratios (HR) and 95% confidence intervals [95% CI] for the association of OC use with endometrial cancer risk. OC use was associated with lower endometrial cancer risk (ever use, HR 0.77 [95% CI 0.65-0.91]; >10 years of use, 0.43 [0.32-0.58] vs. never OC use). Inverse associations for duration were evident regardless of time since last use. Longer durations (> 5 years) of ethinyl estradiol (0.52 [0.41-0.67]) and second-generation progestins (0.43 [0.30-0.61]), both versus never use, were more strongly associated with lower risk than mestranol (0.66 [0.50-0.88], p-het = 0.01) and first-generation progestins (0.62 [0.49-0.78], p-het = 0.03). Inverse associations were generally observed for cross-classified cumulative average estrogen and progestin dose and potency (< vs. ≥ median; ever use vs. never OC use), with the exception of high estrogen and low progestin dose. OCs were associated with lower endometrial cancer risk, independent of time since last use. Use of ethinyl estradiol and second-generation progestins were more strongly inversely associated with risk compared with older formulations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10654-020-00705-5DOI Listing
December 2020

Associations of self-reported obstructive sleep apnea with total and site-specific cancer risk in older women: a prospective study.

Sleep 2021 03;44(3)

Division of Sleep and Circadian Disorders, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA.

Background And Objectives: Chronic intermittent hypoxia resulting from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) may activate multiple carcinogenic pathways and lead to cancer development.

Methods: We prospectively examined the association between OSA and cancer risk among 65,330 women in the Nurses' Health Study who were free of cancer in 2008 (mean age: 73.3 years). Incident cancer diagnoses were collected until 2016 and confirmed by pathology reports. Clinically diagnosed OSA was self-reported in 2008 and updated in 2012. We used time-dependent Cox regression to estimate hazard ratios (HR) for the associations of OSA with total and site-specific cancer risk.

Results: We documented 5,257 incident cancer diagnoses during follow-up. In the age-adjusted model, OSA was associated with a 15% (95% CI: 1.03, 1.29) increase in total cancer risk. The association became nonsignificant after adjustment for multiple cancer risk factors (HR: 1.08; 95% CI: 0.96, 1.21). When examining cancer risk by site, OSA was associated with significantly increased risk for lung (fully adjusted HR: 1.52; 95% CI: 1.07, 2.17), bladder (fully adjusted HR: 1.94; 95% CI: 1.12, 3.35), and thyroid cancer (fully adjusted HR: 2.06; 95% CI: 1.01, 4.22) and possibly increased risk for kidney cancer (fully adjusted HR: 1.59; 95% CI: 0.84, 3.01). When grouping cancer sites by risk factor profiles, OSA was positively associated with smoking-related cancers (fully adjusted HR: 1.37; 95% CI: 1.11, 1.67), and this association was stronger in never smokers than ever smokers.

Conclusion: While OSA was not independently associated with overall cancer risk in older women, significant associations were observed for smoking-related cancers, especially in nonsmokers.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/sleep/zsaa198DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7953220PMC
March 2021

Anxiety, Depression, and Colorectal Cancer Survival: Results from Two Prospective Cohorts.

J Clin Med 2020 Sep 30;9(10). Epub 2020 Sep 30.

Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02115, USA.

Given the unalterable nature of most risk factors for colorectal cancer (CRC) survival (e.g., disease stage), identifying modifiable determinants is critical. We investigated whether anxiety and depression were related to CRC survival using data from the Nurses' Health Study (NHS) and Health Professional Follow-up Study (HPFS). Participants who received a CRC diagnosis and provided information about anxiety (n = 335; n = 232) and depression (n = 893; n = 272) within 4 years of diagnosis were included. Cox regression models estimated hazard ratios (HR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) of overall mortality, while controlling for covariates (sociodemographics, cancer characteristics, and lifestyle factors). Pooled risk estimates were derived from fixed effects meta-analyses of the cohorts. Among 1732 CRC patients, 814 deaths occurred during the 28-year follow-up. Each 1 standard deviation increase in anxiety or depression symptoms was associated with a similar 16% higher mortality risk (anxiety: 95% CI = 1.05-1.29; depression: 95% CI = 1.07-1.26). Comparable results were observed across all sensitivity analyses (introducing a 1-year lag, restricting to CRC-related mortality, considering potential behavioral pathways) and stratified models (cancer stage, sex). Our findings suggest greater anxiety and depression symptoms can not only impede adherence to healthy habits and reduce quality of life in cancer patients but could also be a marker for accelerated CRC progression.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/jcm9103174DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7599619PMC
September 2020

"I think that a brief conversation from their provider can go a very long way": Patient and provider perspectives on barriers and facilitators of genetic testing after ovarian cancer.

Support Care Cancer 2021 May 25;29(5):2663-2677. Epub 2020 Sep 25.

Department of Health Outcomes & Behavior, Moffitt Cancer Center, 12902 Magnolia Drive, MRC-COEE, Tampa, FL, 33612, USA.

Objective: Identify predisposing, enabling, and reinforcing factors impacting genetic counseling/testing among ovarian cancer patients guided by Green and Kreuter's PRECEDE-PROCEED model.

Methods: Gynecologic oncology providers (N = 4), genetic counselors (N = 4), and ovarian cancer patients (N = 9) completed semi-structured qualitative interviews exploring participants' knowledge of and experiences with genetic counseling/testing. Interviews were audio recorded, transcribed verbatim, and analyzed using inductive content analysis by two independent raters.

Results: Thematic analysis identified predisposing, enabling, and reinforcing factors impacting referral for and uptake of genetic counseling/testing. Predisposing factors included participant's knowledge, beliefs, and attitudes related to genetic counseling/testing. Both patients and providers also cited that insurance coverage and out-of-pocket cost are major concerns for ovarian cancer patients considering genetic testing. Finally, both patients and providers emphasized that genetic counseling/testing would provide additional information to an ovarian cancer patient. While providers emphasized that genetic testing results were useful for informing a patient's personal treatment plan, patients emphasized that this knowledge would be beneficial for their family members.

Conclusion: Barriers to genetic testing for ovarian cancer patients exist at multiple levels, including the patient (e.g., knowledge, attitudes), the provider (e.g., workload, availability of services), the institution (e.g., difficulty with referrals/scheduling), and the healthcare system (e.g., insurance/cost). Interventions aiming to increase genetic testing among ovarian cancer patients will likely need to target multiple levels of influence. Future quantitative studies are needed to replicate these results. This line of work will inform specific multilevel intervention strategies that are adaptable to different practice settings, ultimately improving guideline concordant care.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00520-020-05779-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7981241PMC
May 2021

Obstructive Sleep Apnea and Risk for Incident Vertebral and Hip Fracture in Women.

J Bone Miner Res 2020 11 9;35(11):2143-2150. Epub 2020 Sep 9.

Channing Division of Network Medicine, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, MA, USA.

Recent studies suggest a positive association between obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), a disorder associated with intermittent hypoxia and sleep fragmentation, and derangements in bone metabolism. However, no prospective study to date has investigated the association between OSA and fracture risk in women. We conducted a prospective study examining the relation between OSA and risk of incident vertebral fracture (VF) and hip fracture (HF) in the Nurses' Health Study. History of physician-diagnosed OSA was assessed by self-reported questionnaires. A previous validation study demonstrated high concordance between self-reports and medical record identification of OSA. OSA severity was further categorized according to the presence or absence of self-reported sleepiness. Self-reports of VF were confirmed by medical record review. Self-reported HF was assessed by biennial questionnaires. Cox proportional-hazards models estimated the hazard ratio for fracture according to OSA status, adjusted for potential confounders, including BMI, physical activity, calcium intake, history of osteoporosis, and falls, and use of sleep medications. Among 55,264 women without prior history of fracture, physician-diagnosed OSA was self-reported in 1.3% in 2002 and increased to 3.3% by 2012. Between 2002 and 2014, 461 incident VF cases and 921 incident HF cases were documented. The multivariable-adjusted hazard ratio (HR) for confirmed VF for women with history of OSA was 2.00 (95% CI, 1.29-3.12) compared with no OSA history, with the strongest association observed for OSA with daytime sleepiness (HR 2.86; 95% CI, 1.31-6.21). No association was observed between OSA history and self-reported HF risk (HR 0.83; 95% CI, 0.49-1.43). History of OSA is independently associated with higher risk of confirmed VF but did not have a statistically significant association with self-reported HF in women. Further research is warranted in understanding the role of OSA and intermittent hypoxia in bone metabolism and health that may differ by fracture site. © 2020 American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (ASBMR).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jbmr.4127DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7719618PMC
November 2020

Associations of depression status with plasma levels of candidate lipid and amino acid metabolites: a meta-analysis of individual data from three independent samples of US postmenopausal women.

Mol Psychiatry 2020 Aug 28. Epub 2020 Aug 28.

Channing Division of Network Medicine, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital, and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.

Recent animal and small clinical studies have suggested depression is related to altered lipid and amino acid profiles. However, this has not been examined in a population-based sample, particularly in women. We identified multiple metabolites associated with depression as potential candidates from prior studies. Cross-sectional data from three independent samples of postmenopausal women were analyzed, including women from the Women's Health Initiative-Observational Study (WHI-OS, n = 926), the WHI-Hormone Trials (WHI-HT; n = 1,325), and the Nurses' Health Study II Mind-Body Study (NHSII-MBS; n = 218). Positive depression status was defined as having any of the following: elevated depressive symptoms, antidepressant use, or depression history. Plasma metabolites were measured using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (21 phosphatidylcholines (PCs), 7 lysophosphatidylethanolamines, 5 ceramides, 3 branched chain amino acids, and 9 neurotransmitters). Associations between depression status and metabolites were evaluated using multivariable linear regression; results were pooled by random-effects meta-analysis with multiple testing adjustment using the false discovery rate (FDR). Prevalence rates of positive depression status were 24.4% (WHI-OS), 25.7% (WHI-HT), and 44.7% (NHSII-MBS). After multivariable adjustment, positive depression status was associated with higher levels of glutamate and PC 36 : 1/38 : 3, and lower levels of tryptophan and GABA-to-glutamate and GABA-to-glutamine ratio (FDR-p < 0.05). Positive associations with LPE 18 : 0/18 : 1 and inverse associations with valine and serotonin were also observed, although these associations did not survive FDR adjustment. Associations of positive depression status with several candidate metabolites including PC 36 : 1/38 : 3 and amino acids involved in neurotransmission suggest potential depression-related metabolic alterations in postmenopausal women, with possible implications for later chronic disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41380-020-00870-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7914294PMC
August 2020

Estrogen Receptor-β Expression of Ovarian Tumors and Its Association with Ovarian Cancer Risk Factors.

Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 2020 11 20;29(11):2211-2219. Epub 2020 Aug 20.

Department of Cancer Epidemiology, H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, Tampa, Florida.

Background: Differential associations between ovarian cancer risk factors and estrogen receptor-α (ERα) ovarian tumor expression have been noted; however, no research has assessed estrogen receptor-β (ERβ) expression. Thus, in exploratory analyses, we assessed the association of several factors with ovarian cancer risk by ERβ tumor status.

Methods: We conducted a nested case-control study within the prospective Nurses' Health Study cohorts (NHS/NHSII), with exposures collected through biennial questionnaires. Paraffin-embedded tumor blocks were requested for cases diagnosed from 1976 to 2006 (NHS) and 1989 to 2005 (NHSII) and tissue microarrays were stained for nuclear ERβ (ERβ-nuc) and cytoplasmic ERβ (ERβ-cyto), with any staining considered positive (+). We obtained odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) using multivariate polytomous logistic regression.

Results: We included 245 cases [43% ERβ-cyto (+) and 71% ERβ-nuc (+)] and 1,050 matched controls. An inverse association was observed between parity and risk of ERβ-nuc (+) (OR, parous vs. nulliparous: 0.46; 95% CI, 0.26-0.81), but not ERβ-nuc (-) tumors (OR, parous vs. nulliparous: 1.51; 95% CI, 0.45-5.04; = 0.04). Conversely, parity was inversely associated with ERβ-cyto (-) tumors (OR, parous vs. nulliparous: 0.42; 95% CI, 0.23-0.78), but was not associated with ERβ-cyto (+) tumors (OR, parous vs. nulliparous: 1.08; 95% CI, 0.45-2.63; = 0.05). Associations for other exposures, including hormone therapy, did not differ by ERβ-nuc or ERβ-cyto status.

Conclusions: Our results suggest that parity may influence ovarian cancer risk, in part, through alterations in ERβ localization within tumor cells.

Impact: Alterations in ERβ expression and localization appear to be important for ovarian cancer etiology. Future research should confirm our results and assess potential biologic mechanisms for the observed associations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-20-0618DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7641961PMC
November 2020

Ovarian Cancer Risk Factor Associations by Primary Anatomic Site: The Ovarian Cancer Cohort Consortium.

Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 2020 10 30;29(10):2010-2018. Epub 2020 Jul 30.

Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.

Background: Epithelial ovarian, fallopian tube, and primary peritoneal cancers have shared developmental pathways. Few studies have prospectively examined heterogeneity in risk factor associations across these three anatomic sites.

Methods: We identified 3,738 ovarian, 337 peritoneal, and 176 fallopian tube incident cancer cases in 891,731 women from 15 prospective cohorts in the Ovarian Cancer Cohort Consortium. Associations between 18 putative risk factors and risk of ovarian, peritoneal, and fallopian tube cancer, overall and for serous and high-grade serous tumors, were evaluated using competing risks Cox proportional hazards regression. Heterogeneity was assessed by likelihood ratio tests.

Results: Most associations did not vary by tumor site ( ≥ 0.05). Associations between first pregnancy ( = 0.04), tubal ligation ( = 0.01), and early-adult (age 18-21 years) body mass index (BMI; = 0.02) and risk differed between ovarian and peritoneal cancers. The association between early-adult BMI and risk further differed between peritoneal and fallopian tube cancer ( = 0.03). First pregnancy and tubal ligation were inversely associated with ovarian, but not peritoneal, cancer. Higher early-adult BMI was associated with higher risk of peritoneal, but not ovarian or fallopian tube, cancer. Patterns were generally similar when restricted to serous and high-grade serous cases.

Conclusions: Ovarian, fallopian tube, and primary peritoneal cancers appear to have both shared and distinct etiologic pathways, although most risk factors appear to have similar associations by anatomic site.

Impact: Further studies on the mechanisms underlying the differences in risk profiles may provide insights regarding the developmental origins of tumors arising in the peritoneal cavity and inform prevention efforts.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-20-0354DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7541500PMC
October 2020

Systemic Immune Response and Cancer Risk: Filling the Missing Piece of Immuno-Oncology.

Cancer Res 2020 05;80(9):1801-1803

Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts.

While immuno-oncology has made significant advances in activating local tumor immune responses, leading to improved outcomes, the role of systemic immunity in cancer incidence remains poorly understood. Le Cornet and colleagues prospectively studied circulating immune cells quantified by DNA methylation markers in relation to incidence of breast, colorectal, lung, and prostate cancer among initially healthy individuals. A positive association with cancer risk was observed for higher FOXP3 T-cell-mediated immune tolerance and lower CD8 T-cell-mediated cytotoxicity. Further studies of systemic immunity in cancer development are crucial to identify novel prediction markers and interventional targets for cancer immunoprevention..
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-20-0730DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7213044PMC
May 2020

Association Between Breastfeeding and Ovarian Cancer Risk.

JAMA Oncol 2020 06 11;6(6):e200421. Epub 2020 Jun 11.

Women's Cancer Research Center, Magee-Womens Research Institute, Hillman Cancer Center, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Importance: Breastfeeding has been associated with a reduced risk of epithelial ovarian cancer in multiple studies, but others showed no association. Whether risk reduction extends beyond that provided by pregnancy alone or differs by histotype is unclear. Furthermore, the observed associations between duration and timing of breastfeeding with ovarian cancer risk have been inconsistent.

Objective: To determine the association between breastfeeding (ie, ever/never, duration, timing) and ovarian cancer risk overall and by histotype.

Design, Setting, And Participants: A pooled analysis of parous women with ovarian cancer and controls from 13 case-control studies participating in the Ovarian Cancer Association Consortium was performed. Odds ratios (ORs) and 95% CIs of the overall association were calculated using multivariable logistic regression and polytomous logistic regression for histotype-specific associations. All data were collected from individual sites from November 1989 to December 2009, and analysis took place from September 2017 to July 2019.

Exposures: Data on breastfeeding history, including duration per child breastfed, age at first and last breastfeeding, and years since last breastfeeding were collected by questionnaire or interview and was harmonized across studies.

Main Outcomes And Measures: Diagnosis of epithelial ovarian cancer.

Results: A total of 9973 women with ovarian cancer (mean [SD] age, 57.4 [11.1] years) and 13 843 controls (mean [SD] age, 56.4 [11.7] years) were included. Breastfeeding was associated with a 24% lower risk of invasive ovarian cancer (odds ratio [OR], 0.76; 95% CI, 0.71-0.80). Independent of parity, ever having breastfed was associated with reduction in risk of all invasive ovarian cancers, particularly high-grade serous and endometrioid cancers. For a single breastfeeding episode, mean breastfeeding duration of 1 to 3 months was associated with 18% lower risk (OR, 0.82; 95% CI, 0.76-0.88), and breastfeeding for 12 or more months was associated with a 34% lower risk (OR, 0.66; 95% CI, 0.58-0.75). More recent breastfeeding was associated with a reduction in risk (OR, 0.56; 95% CI, 0.47-0.66 for <10 years) that persisted for decades (OR, 0.83; 95% CI, 0.77-0.90 for ≥30 years; P for trend = .02).

Conclusions And Relevance: Breastfeeding is associated with a significant decrease in risk of ovarian cancer overall and for the high-grade serous subtype, the most lethal type of ovarian cancer. The findings suggest that breastfeeding is a potentially modifiable factor that may lower risk of ovarian cancer independent of pregnancy alone.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jamaoncol.2020.0421DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7118668PMC
June 2020

A Prospective Analysis of Circulating Plasma Metabolites Associated with Ovarian Cancer Risk.

Cancer Res 2020 03 22;80(6):1357-1367. Epub 2020 Jan 22.

Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts.

Ovarian cancer has few known risk factors, hampering identification of high-risk women. We assessed the association of prediagnostic plasma metabolites ( = 420) with risk of epithelial ovarian cancer, including both borderline and invasive tumors. A total of 252 cases and 252 matched controls from the Nurses' Health Studies were included. Multivariable logistic regression was used to estimate ORs and 95% confidence intervals (CI), comparing the 90th-10th percentile in metabolite levels, using the permutation-based Westfall and Young approach to account for testing multiple correlated hypotheses. Weighted gene coexpression network analysis (WGCNA; = 10 metabolite modules) and metabolite set enrichment analysis ( = 23 metabolite classes) were also evaluated. An increase in pseudouridine levels from the 10th to the 90th percentile was associated with a 2.5-fold increased risk of overall ovarian cancer (OR = 2.56; 95% CI, 1.48-4.45; = 0.001/adjusted = 0.15); a similar risk estimate was observed for serous/poorly differentiated tumors ( = 176 cases; comparable OR = 2.38; 95% CI, 1.33-4.32; = 0.004/adjusted = 0.55). For nonserous tumors ( = 34 cases), pseudouridine and C36:2 phosphatidylcholine plasmalogen had the strongest statistical associations (OR = 9.84; 95% CI, 2.89-37.82; < 0.001/adjusted = 0.07; and OR = 0.11; 95% CI, 0.03-0.35; < 0.001/adjusted = 0.06, respectively). Five WGCNA modules and 9 classes were associated with risk overall at FDR ≤ 0.20. Triacylglycerols (TAG) showed heterogeneity by tumor aggressiveness (case-only heterogeneity < 0.0001). The TAG association with risk overall and serous tumors differed by acyl carbon content and saturation. In summary, this study suggests that pseudouridine may be a novel risk factor for ovarian cancer and that TAGs may also be important, particularly for rapidly fatal tumors, with associations differing by structural features. SIGNIFICANCE: Pseudouridine represents a potential novel risk factor for ovarian cancer and triglycerides may be important particularly in rapidly fatal ovarian tumors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-19-2567DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7073287PMC
March 2020

The Risk of Ovarian Cancer Increases with an Increase in the Lifetime Number of Ovulatory Cycles: An Analysis from the Ovarian Cancer Cohort Consortium (OC3).

Cancer Res 2020 03 13;80(5):1210-1218. Epub 2020 Jan 13.

Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center Utrecht, University Utrecht, Utrecht, the Netherlands.

Repeated exposure to the acute proinflammatory environment that follows ovulation at the ovarian surface and distal fallopian tube over a woman's reproductive years may increase ovarian cancer risk. To address this, analyses included individual-level data from 558,709 naturally menopausal women across 20 prospective cohorts, among whom 3,246 developed invasive epithelial ovarian cancer (2,045 serous, 319 endometrioid, 184 mucinous, 121 clear cell, 577 other/unknown). Cox models were used to estimate multivariable-adjusted HRs between lifetime ovulatory cycles (LOC) and its components and ovarian cancer risk overall and by histotype. Women in the 90th percentile of LOC (>514 cycles) were almost twice as likely to be diagnosed with ovarian cancer than women in the 10th percentile (<294) [HR (95% confidence interval): 1.92 (1.60-2.30)]. Risk increased 14% per 5-year increase in LOC (60 cycles) [(1.10-1.17)]; this association remained after adjustment for LOC components: number of pregnancies and oral contraceptive use [1.08 (1.04-1.12)]. The association varied by histotype, with increased risk of serous [1.13 (1.09-1.17)], endometrioid [1.20 (1.10-1.32)], and clear cell [1.37 (1.18-1.58)], but not mucinous [0.99 (0.88-1.10), P-heterogeneity = 0.01] tumors. Heterogeneity across histotypes was reduced [P-heterogeneity = 0.15] with adjustment for LOC components [1.08 serous, 1.11 endometrioid, 1.26 clear cell, 0.94 mucinous]. Although the 10-year absolute risk of ovarian cancer is small, it roughly doubles as the number of LOC rises from approximately 300 to 500. The consistency and linearity of effects strongly support the hypothesis that each ovulation leads to small increases in the risk of most ovarian cancers, a risk that cumulates through life, suggesting this as an important area for identifying intervention strategies. SIGNIFICANCE: Although ovarian cancer is rare, risk of most ovarian cancers doubles as the number of lifetime ovulatory cycles increases from approximately 300 to 500. Thus, identifying an important area for cancer prevention research.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-19-2850DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7056529PMC
March 2020

Association of Powder Use in the Genital Area With Risk of Ovarian Cancer.

JAMA 2020 01;323(1):49-59

Clinical Genetics Branch, Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, National Cancer Institute, Rockville, Maryland.

Importance: The relationship between use of powder in the genital area and ovarian cancer is not established. Positive associations reported in case-control studies have not been confirmed in cohort studies.

Objective: To estimate the association between use of powder in the genital area and ovarian cancer using prospective observational data.

Design, Setting, And Participants: Data were pooled from 4 large, US-based cohorts: Nurses' Health Study (enrollment 1976; follow-up 1982-2016; n = 81 869), Nurses' Health Study II (enrollment 1989; follow-up 2013-2017; n = 61 261), Sister Study (enrollment 2003-2009; follow-up 2003-2017; n = 40 647), and Women's Health Initiative Observational Study (enrollment 1993-1998; follow-up 1993-2017; n = 73 267).

Exposures: Ever, long-term (≥20 years), and frequent (≥1/week) use of powder in the genital area.

Main Outcomes And Measures: The primary analysis examined the association between ever use of powder in the genital area and self-reported incident ovarian cancer. Covariate-adjusted hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% CIs were estimated using Cox proportional hazards models.

Results: The pooled sample included 252 745 women (median age at baseline, 57 years) with 38% self-reporting use of powder in the genital area. Ten percent reported long-term use, and 22% reported frequent use. During a median of 11.2 years of follow-up (3.8 million person-years at risk), 2168 women developed ovarian cancer (58 cases/100 000 person-years). Ovarian cancer incidence was 61 cases/100 000 person-years among ever users and 55 cases/100 000 person-years among never users (estimated risk difference at age 70 years, 0.09% [95% CI, -0.02% to 0.19%]; estimated HR, 1.08 [95% CI, 0.99 to 1.17]). The estimated HR for frequent vs never use was 1.09 (95% CI, 0.97 to 1.23) and for long-term vs never use, the HR was 1.01 (95% CI, 0.82 to 1.25). Subgroup analyses were conducted for 10 variables; the tests for heterogeneity were not statistically significant for any of these comparisons. While the estimated HR for the association between ever use of powder in the genital area and ovarian cancer risk among women with a patent reproductive tract was 1.13 (95% CI, 1.01 to 1.26), the P value for interaction comparing women with vs without patent reproductive tracts was .15.

Conclusions And Relevance: In this analysis of pooled data from women in 4 US cohorts, there was not a statistically significant association between use of powder in the genital area and incident ovarian cancer. However, the study may have been underpowered to identify a small increase in risk.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jama.2019.20079DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6990816PMC
January 2020

Estimated Number of Lifetime Ovulatory Years and Its Determinants in Relation to Levels of Circulating Inflammatory Biomarkers.

Am J Epidemiol 2020 07;189(7):660-670

Department of Cancer Epidemiology, H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, Tampa, Florida.

Reproductive events, such as ovulation, trigger an inflammatory cascade. Few studies have examined their long-term influence on inflammatory profiles. We included 3,393 premenopausal and 3,915 postmenopausal women with intact ovaries/uterus from the Nurses' Health studies (Nurses' Health Study (1989-1990) and Nurses' Health Study II (1996-1999)) in an analysis of the association between lifetime ovulatory years (LOY) and levels of inflammatory biomarkers. We estimated LOY as age at menopause (age at blood collection for premenopausal women) minus age at menarche, subtracting years of oral contraceptive (OC) use and 1 year per pregnancy. After adjustment for other inflammation-related factors (e.g., body mass index, exercise, diet), every 5-year increase in LOY was associated with lower C-reactive protein (CRP) levels in both premenopausal (difference = -11.5%, 95% confidence interval: -15.0, -8.0; P < 0.0001) and postmenopausal (difference = -7.2%, 95% confidence interval: -10.0, -4.3; P < 0.0001) women. Older age at menopause (P = 0.007), earlier menarche (P = 0.007), and shorter duration of OC use (P = 0.002) were associated with lower CRP levels in postmenopausal women, whereas duration of OC use was positively associated with CRP levels in premenopausal women (P < 0.0001). LOY was modestly inversely associated with interleukin 6 in postmenopausal women (P = 0.03). Notably, the associations of CRP with LOY were similar in magnitude to associations with exercise and a healthy diet, though weaker than the association with body mass index. Although many reproductive events induce acute inflammation, increased LOY was associated with lower chronic systemic inflammation even after menopause.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/aje/kwz264DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7393306PMC
July 2020