Sugar in western diets increases breast cancer risk

Washington D.C., Jan. 2 (ANI): In a recent study, researchers found that high amounts of dietary sugar in the typical Western diet might increase the risk of breast cancer and metastasis to the lungs.

Research conducted by the researchers from the University of Texas demonstrated the dietary sugar’s effect on an enzymatic signaling pathway known as 12-LOX (12-lipoxygenase).

Researcher Peiying Yang said that they found that sucrose intake in mice comparable to levels of Western diets led to increased tumor growth and metastasis, when compared to a non-sugar starch diet.

He added that this was due to increased expression of 12-LOX and a related fatty acid called 12-HETE.

Co-author Lorenzo Cohen said that their study investigated the impact of dietary sugar on mammary gland tumor development in multiple mouse models, along with mechanisms that may be involved.

Cohen further said that they determined that it was specifically fructose, in table sugar and high-fructose corn syrup, ubiquitous within the food system, which was responsible for facilitating lung metastasis and 12-HETE production in breast tumors.

Identifying risk factors for breast cancer is a public health priority, said the authors. The researchers state that moderate sugar consumption is critical, given that the per capita consumption of sugar in the U.S. has surged to over 100 lbs. per year and an increase in consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages has been identified as a significant contributor to an epidemic of obesity, heart disease and cancer worldwide.

The study team believes that the mechanism by which dietary sucrose or fructose affects breast tumor growth and metastasis, especially through the 12-LOX pathways, warrants further investigation.

The study is published in the Journal Cancer Research. (ANI)

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