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Dec 24, 2003 (United Press International via COMTEX) -- NEW EVIDENCE OF PROSTATE CANCER RISK

New evidence shows animal products increase the risk for prostate cancer while dietary vegetables reduce the likelihood of getting the disease. A multi-country study found in the online edition of the journal European Urology provides information about why prostate cancer mortality rates in the United States and northern Europe are some 5 times higher than in Hong Kong, Iran, Japan and Turkey. The strongest risk factor for prostate cancer mortality was animal products, such as meat and dairy products, and the strongest risk reduction factors were onions and other protective vegetable products -- including cereals/grains, beans and fruits. Fat and protein are risk factors, while complex carbohydrates and antioxidants are risk reduction factors.


Gastric bypass surgery is well-established for treating morbid obesity and now researchers say it could also cure type 2 diabetes. The procedure may work for diabetics even if they are not overweight, according to a new study from IRCAD/The European Institute of Telesurgery, published in the January 2004 issue of the Annals of Surgery. The antidiabetic effect of gastric bypass surgery in obese patients was first found in 1982 and was affirmed in a recent, large-scale study. It was unclear, though, if the effect was caused by the subsequent weight loss by patients or if the surgery itself actually had a direct effect on controlling adult onset diabetes. Researchers found in a study of non-obese rats with naturally occurring diabetes that glucose levels returned to normal after bypass surgery compared to the same type of rats who did not have the procedure and whose diabetes worsened. The study provides new hope for the more than 150 million people worldwide who have diabetes -- a number expected to double by 2025.


Studies show obese men with prostate cancer are more likely to have aggressive tumors than those of normal weight or who are slightly overweight. The Naval Medical Center research, reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, also finds obese men are more likely to experience cancer recurrence after surgery compared to their slimmer colleagues. "The primary role of obesity in prostate cancer is still unclear, but it appears to induce the development of more aggressive tumors," says researcher Dr. Christopher L. Amling. Obesity rates in the general adult population are similar between African-American and Caucasian men but the research shows obese prostate cancer patients were more likely to be African-American -- which could help explain why African-American men with prostate cancer generally have more aggressive tumors and worse outcomes.


University of Michigan researchers say oral sex and masturbation -- not men -- are most likely to cause recurrent infections in women. Researchers say the presence of yeast in male sex partners does not make the women they have sex with more prone to recurrent yeast infections. Study author Dr. Barbara Reed says, "This study suggests the risk for recurrent infections is related to something else -- perhaps the woman's immune response to the yeast." The woman's age at first intercourse, lifetime number of partners, frequency of intercourse or anal intercourse in the previous month also were not associated with recurrences.


(EDITORS: For more information on PROSTATE RISK, contact William B. Grant at or call (757) 870-8434. For GASTRIC BYPASS, contact Dr. Francesco Rubino at 33 3 88 11 91 00. For PROSTATE OBESITY call Carrie Housman at (703) 519-1423 and for YEAST INFECTIONS, call Kara Gavin at (734) 764-2220)

Copyright 2003 by United Press International.

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