Dietary Fat Helps Prostate Cancer to Spread
Published Monday 15 January 2018 Medical News Today
By Ana Sandoiu
New research demonstrates how the dietary fat contained within the Western diet, in combination with genetic factors, can cause prostate cancer tumors to spread.
The recent research consists of a set of papers published in the journals Nature Genetics and Nature Communications.
The first author of the paper published in Nature Genetics is Ming Chen, Ph.D., a research fellow in the laboratory of senior author Dr. Pier Paolo Pandolfi, who is also the director of the Cancer Center and Cancer Research Institute at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, MA.
The findings shed new light on the complex interplay between our genes and dietary fat, as well as on the role of this dynamic in promoting the spread, or metastasis, of prostate cancer.
As Dr. Pandolfi says, the results of this research “are tremendously actionable, and they surely will convince you to change your lifestyle.”
The studies also pave the way for the new use of existing drugs in the fight against prostate cancer.
Prostate cancer and the Western diet
Chen explains the motivation behind the research, saying, “Although it is widely postulated that a Western diet can promote prostate cancer progression, direct evidence supporting a strong association between dietary lipids and prostate cancer has been lacking.”
In fact, Medical News Today has reported on a variety of studies pointing to a link between the Western diet and the development of prostate cancer or colorectal cancer.
One of these suggested that men who follow a Western diet have a two and a half times higher risk of dying from prostate cancer than those who followed a diet richer in fruit, vegetables, and whole grains.
Dr. Pandolfi and the team found additional evidence that the Western diet drives prostate cancer while they were researching the genetic culprits that cause the disease to spread.