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Alcohol Consumption and the Risk of Colorectal Cancer for Mismatch Repair Gene Mutation Carriers
  • Published Date:
    Nov 03 2016
  • Source:
    Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 26(3):366-375.

Public Access Version Available on: March 01, 2018 information icon
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  • Pubmed ID:
  • Pubmed Central ID:
  • Description:

    People with germline mutation in one of the DNA mismatch repair (MMR) genes have increased colorectal cancer risk. For these high-risk people, study findings of the relationship between alcohol consumption and colorectal cancer risk have been inconclusive.


    1,925 MMR gene mutations carriers recruited into the Colon Cancer Family Registry who had completed a questionnaire on lifestyle factors were included. Weighted Cox proportional hazard regression models were used to estimate hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for the association between alcohol consumption and colorectal cancer.


    Colorectal cancer was diagnosed in 769 carriers (40%) at a mean (standard deviation) age of 42.6 (10.3) years. Compared with abstention, ethanol consumption from any alcoholic beverage up to 14 grams/day and >28 grams/day were associated with increased colorectal cancer risk (HR, 1.50; 95%CI, 1.09–2.07 and 1.69; 95%CI, 1.07–2.65 respectively; P-trend=0.05), and colon cancer risk (HR, 1.78; 95%CI, 1.27–2.49 and 1.94; 95%CI, 1.19–3.18 respectively; P-trend=0.02). However, there was no clear evidence for an association with rectal cancer risk. Also, there was no evidence for associations between consumption of individual alcoholic beverage types (beer, wine, spirits) and colorectal, colon, or rectal cancer risk.


    Our data suggests that alcohol consumption, particularly more than 28 grams/day of ethanol (~2 standard drinks of alcohol in the US), is associated with increased colorectal cancer risk for MMR gene mutation carriers.


    Although these data suggested that alcohol consumption in MMR carriers was associated with increased colorectal cancer risk, there was no evidence of a dose-response, and not all types of alcohol consumption were associated with increased risk.

  • Document Type:
  • Collection(s):
  • Funding:
    HHSN261201000140C/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    U01 CA074799/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    U24 CA074783/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    N01 CN067009/CN/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    U24 CA074794/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    N01PC35137/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    U24 CA074806/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    HHSN261201300009C/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    U24 CA097735/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    U01 CA074794/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    HHSN261201300012I/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    N01PC35142/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    HHSN261201000035I/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    HHSN261201000034C/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    U01 CA097735/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    UM1 CA167551/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    U58 DP003862/DP/NCCDPHP CDC HHS/United States
    U01 CA074783/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    U24 CA074799/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    U01 CA074806/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    U24 CA074800/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
    U01 CA074800/CA/NCI NIH HHS/United States
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