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22.04.2020


Vitamin D supplement helps women with breast cancer survive

We already knew that exercise significantly improves the prospects of women with breast cancer. Researchers at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland stumbled upon another non-toxic strategy that can protect breast cancer patients from their disease: vitamin D supplementation.

Study
The researchers followed 5,417 Irish women aged 50-80 who had been diagnosed with breast cancer until eleven years after their diagnosis.

The women did not use vitamin D supplements at the time of diagnosis, but some of them started doing so afterward. The researchers compared their chances of survival to those of women who did not use vitamin D.

Results
The women who started taking a vitamin D supplement after their diagnosis had a 20 percent higher survival rate than women who did not start taking vitamin D supplements.


Vitamin D supplement helps women with breast cancer survive

Vitamin D supplement helps women with breast cancer survive


The sooner the women started supplementation after their diagnosis, the better their chances of survival. In the women who started supplementation within six months of their diagnosis, the survival rate was 49 percent higher compared to non-users.


Vitamin D supplement helps women with breast cancer survive


Possible mechanism
"Many breast cancer cells contain vitamin D receptors", the Irish speculate. "When these receptors are activated by 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D in the tissue they induce differentiation and inhibit proliferation, invasiveness, angiogenesis, metastatic potential, suppression of aromatase activity leading to reduced estrogen levels and reduction in inflammation via inhibition of COX-2 expression."

Conclusion
"Our results suggest that vitamin D has the potential as a non-toxic and cheap treatment to improve survival in breast cancer patients", the researchers write.

"Our results strongly support investment in well-designed and sufficiently powered randomized controlled trials to fully evaluate the associations of vitamin D use with improved survival among patients with breast cancer before vitamin D supplementation can be considered routine adjuvant therapy."

Source:
Cancer Res Treat. 2018;172(1):179-90.

More:
Vitamin D supplements reduce the risk of cancer death 03.04.2020
High vitamin D levels due to supplementation may protect against breast cancer 24.06.2018
High vitamin D level multiplies survival chances of cancer patients 04.03.2013

Archives:
Cancer Prevention & Survival
Breast Cancer
Vitamin D
Vitamins


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