High cholesterol linked with breast cancer
Article date: 7 July 2014
An increased risk of developing breast cancer has been linked with having high cholesterol, according to new research.
The report - carried out in the UK - took place over a period of 14 years and involved the analysis of data from more than one million patients.
Its findings were presented to the audience at Frontiers in CardioVascular Biology 2014 in Barcelona on Friday (July 4th), with the experts who conducted the investigation indicating their results certainly warrant further investigation into whether or not high cholesterol can be considered to be a cause of the disease.
Lead author Dr Rahul Potluri said: "A prospective study that monitors the risk of breast cancer in women with and without high cholesterol is needed to confirm what we observed.
"If the connection between high cholesterol and breast cancer is validated, the next step would be to see if lowering cholesterol with statins can reduce the risk of developing cancer."
Dr Potluri noted this potential breakthrough could be significant, as statins are cost-effective, easy to obtain and "relatively safe". He stated that a clinical trial involving this form of treatment could be the next step over the coming ten to 15 years, with the aim of testing the effect of statins in limiting the incidence of breast cancer.
If the investigation were to take place and be successful, then it is quite feasible they could have a role in preventing women from developing breast cancer in the future, particularly among those in high-risk groups.
According to official figures, 48,000 females are diagnosed with the disease every year, with four-fifths of those aged over 50. However, younger women and men are also susceptible to it in rarer cases.
These latest findings have been described as "exciting", with the possibility it could have a "big impact" on those who could be at risk of developing breast cancer in the future.