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Selenium may slash women's bladder cancer risk by one-third.

A new study by researchers at Dartmouth Medical School suggests that increased levels of the essential micronutrient selenium may play an important role in preventing bladder cancer, at least among women and moderate smokers. Increased selenium intake was also associated with a reduced incidence of a particular class of cancers, related to mutations in the tumor suppressor gene p53. (1)


Researchers measured levels of selenium in the toenails of more than 1,800 people, including subjects with newly diagnosed bladder cancer and healthy control subjects. Higher selenium levels were associated with a 34% reduced risk of bladder cancer among females, a 39% risk reduction among moderate smokers, and a 43% reduction in the risk of p53-positive bladder cancer. (1)

While previous studies have identified a link between selenium intake and bladder cancer risk, (2,3) this is believed to be the first study to link selenium with a reduced risk of p53-positive bladder cancer. (1)


(1). Wallace K, Kelsey KT, Schned A, Morris JS, Andrew AS, Karagas MR. Selenium and risk of bladder cancer: a population-based case-control study.Cancer Prev Res (Phila Pa). 2009 Jan;2(1):70-3.

(2.) Navarro Silvera SA, Rohan TE. Trace elements and cancer risk: a review of the epidemiologic evidence. Cancer Causes Control. 2007 Feb;18(1):7-27.

(3.) Kellen E, Zeegers M, Buntinx F. Selenium is inversely associated with bladder cancer risk: a report from the Belgian case-control study on bladder cancer. Int J Urol. 2006 Sep;13(9):1180-4.

--Dale Kiefer

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Title Annotation:IN THE NEWS
Author:Kiefer, Dale
Publication:Life Extension
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Apr 1, 2009
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