Preclinical data indicate that omega-3 fatty acids (n-3FA) potentiate the chemopreventive effect of the antiestrogen (AE) tamoxifen against mammary carcinogenesis.
The role of n-3FA in breast cancer prevention in humans is controversial. Preclinical and epidemiologic data suggest that n-3FA may be preferentially protective in obese subjects. To directly test the protective effect of n-3FA against breast cancer, we conducted a 2-year, open-label randomized clinical trial in 266 healthy postmenopausal women (50% normal weight, 30% overweight, 20% obese) with high breast density (BD; ≥25%) detected on their routine screening mammograms. Eligible women were randomized to one of the following five groups (i) no treatment, control; (ii) raloxifene 60 mg; (iii) raloxifene 30 mg; (iv) n-3FA lovaza 4 g; and (v) lovaza 4 g plus raloxifene 30 mg. The 2-year change in BD, a validated biomarker of breast cancer risk, was the primary endpoint of the study. In subset analysis, we tested the prespecified hypothesis that body mass index (BMI) influences the relationship between plasma n-3FA on BD.
While none of the interventions affected BD in the intention-to-treat analysis, increase in plasma DHA was associated with a decrease in absolute breast density but only in participants with BMI >29. Our results suggest that obese women may preferentially experience breast cancer risk reduction from n-3FA administration.
Cancer Prev Res; 9(4); 275-82. ©2015 AACR.
Cancer Prev Res (Phila). 2016 Apr;9(4):275-82. doi: 10.1158/1940-6207.CAPR-15-0235. Epub 2015 Dec 29.
Influence of Obesity on Breast Density Reduction by Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Evidence from a Randomized Clinical Trial.
Sandhu N1, Schetter SE2, Liao J3, Hartman TJ4, Richie JP5, McGinley J6, Thompson HJ6, Prokopczyk B5, DuBrock C7, Signori C1, Hamilton C8,Calcagnotto A3, Trushin N5, Aliaga C9, Demers LM8, El-Bayoumy K9, Manni A10.