Vitamin D and Cancer Mortality: Systematic Review of Prospective Epidemiological Studies
Jacqueline M. Dekker.
Accumulating evidence from experimental and epidemiological studies suggests that vitamin D deficiency might be a causal
risk factor for cancer and therewith associated mortality. We performed a systematic review in Medline up to February 2012 to identify
prospective studies on 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25[OH]D) and cancer mortality as well as on 25(OH)D and survival in cancer patients. Our
search retrieved 13 studies on cancer-specific mortality and 20 studies on overall mortality in cancer patients. Data on 25(OH)D and
cancer mortality were mainly derived from general populations. The results were inconsistent and yielded either no, inverse or positive
associations. By contrast, the majority of studies in cancer patients showed that patients with higher 25(OH)D levels had a decreased risk
of mortality. This relationship was particularly evident in cohorts of colorectal cancer patients. In contrast, there was no indication for
increased mortality risk with higher vitamin D levels in any cancer cohort. In conclusion, the relationship of vitamin D status and cancerspecific
mortality is still unclear and warrants further studies. Our results provide a strong rationale to perform prospective randomized
controlled studies to document a potential effect of vitamin D supplementation on survival in cancer patients.
Keywords: Vitamin D, Cancer, Death, Mortality, 25(OH)D, Prospective, Calcidiol, Calcitriol, Randomized controlled trial, Epidemiological, RCT, WHI, Colorectal cancer, Outcome, 1, 25(OH)2D, Survival, Follow-up
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