AACR logo Colorectal cancer comprises of cancerous growths in the colon, rectum and appendix. A study claims that long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, chiefly discovered in fish and seafood, could have a function in averting colorectal cancer.

Even though investigational and clinical data propose that long-chain omega-3 fatty acids apparently have anti-neoplastic properties in the colon, epidemiologic data to date has supposedly been full of loopholes.

Sangmi Kim, Ph.D., a postdoctoral fellow at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, Research Triangle Park, N.C. commented, “Experimental data have shown benefits of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids in colorectal carcinogenesis, ranging from reduced tumor growth, suppression of angiogenesis and inhibition of metastasis. Our finding of inverse association between dietary intakes of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids and distal large bowel cancer in white participants adds additional support to the hypothesis,”

Kim and colleagues supposedly examined the association between polyunsaturated fatty acid consumption and distal large bowel cancer by means of data from a population-based control study. They enrolled about 1,509 white participants where approximately 716 people were cancer cases and 787 were controls. They also checked the data of roughly 369 black participants where about 213 were cancer cases and the rest 156 were controls by means of the State Cancer Registry and Division of Motor Vehicles records.

Around 19 polyunsaturated fatty acids were said to be evaluated via an authorize food frequency opinion poll, which encompasses about 124 questions on food items. The experts supposedly applied the questionnaire to gather data on the occurrence and quantity of foods normally eaten during the past one year.

It was observed that patients who consumed more long-chain omega-3 fatty acids appeared to have a decreased danger of developing distal large bowel cancer. As opposed to the lowest quartile, fat consumption in the uppermost quartile was supposedly associated with a 39 percent diminished threat of cancer.

The relations seemed to be only seen in white participants and not in black subjects.

Kim remarked, “We were surprised that the association was not also observed among blacks. We considered several possible explanations but were not able to account for this difference with the data we had. This finding warrants future study, but we should be careful about drawing conclusions about potential racial differences in the benefit from long-chain omega-3 fatty acids from this study.”

Kim finally concluded by mentioning that an increase in dietary intake of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, which mainly come from fish and seafood, may be beneficial in the prevention of distal large bowel cancer.

The study was presented at the American Association for Cancer Research Frontiers in Cancer Prevention Research Conference in Houston.