Exercise linked with reduced prostate cancer risk in Caucasians but not African Americans

February 11, 2013

A new study suggests that exercise may reduce Caucasian men's risk of developing prostate cancer. And among Caucasian men who do have prostate cancer, exercise may reduce their risk of having more serious forms of the disease. Unfortunately, the benefits do not seem to apply to African- American men. The study is published early online in Cancer.

Previous research has linked exercise to a reduced risk of developing prostate cancer. Studies have also revealed that African-American men have an increased risk of developing prostate cancer and of dying from the disease compared with Caucasians. It is not clear if exercise as a function of race plays any role in these disparities.

To investigate, Lionel L. Bañez, MD, of the Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and his colleagues asked 307 men (164 white; 143 black) undergoing a to complete a survey that assessed their exercise amounts per week. The exercise categories included sedentary, mildly active, moderately active, and highly active. Among Caucasians, men who were moderately or highly active were 53% less likely to have biopsy results indicating that they had prostate cancer compared with men who were sedentary or mildly active. There was no association between exercise amount and prostate cancer among black men.

The investigators also looked to see if exercise influenced the grade of tumors that were detected in men who did develop prostate cancer. Among men with cancer, those who exercised had a 13% reduced risk of having high grade disease, meaning that their looked particularly abnormal under a microscope and were likely to quickly grow and spread. When this relationship was further explored as a function of race, it remained significant in but not in African Americans.

"These findings that African-American men may not benefit from exercise the way do could be a contributor to why African- American race is a risk factor for prostate cancer and aggressive . Further studies are needed to investigate the mechanism behind this racial disparity in deriving cancer-related benefits from exercise which disfavors African-American men," said Dr. Bañez.

Explore further: Research determines apparent genetic link to prostate cancer in African-American men

More information: "Association between exercise and primary incidence of prostate cancer – Does race matter?" Abhay A. Singh, Lee W. Jones, Jodi A. Antonelli, Leah Gerber, Elizabeth E. Calloway, Kathleen H. Shuler, Stephen J. Freedland, Delores J. Grant, Cathrine Hoyo, and Lionel L. Bañez. CANCER; Published Online: February 11, 2013 (DOI: 10.1002/cncr.27791).

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Study examines evolution of cancer

February 8, 2016

A novel Yale study answers age-old questions about how cancers spread by applying tools from evolutionary biology. The new insights will help scientists better understand the genetic origins of tumor metastases, and lead ...

How gut inflammation sparks colon cancer

February 4, 2016

Chronic inflammation in the gut increases the risk of colon cancer by as much as 500 percent, and now Duke University researchers think they know why.

The growing menace of HPV‑related throat and mouth cancers

February 2, 2016

There's a new cancer epidemic on the rise. It's an aggressive throat and mouth cancer caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV)—the same sexually transmitted virus that leads to cervical cancer—but it's affecting mostly ...

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

daggoth
not rated yet Feb 11, 2013
They eat too much orange chicken?

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.