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Death Risk Increased by Lack of Vitamin D in Patients With Leukemia

by Kathy Jones on  November 7, 2010 at 1:33 PM Cancer News   - G J E 4
A significant difference in cancer progression and death in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) patients who had sufficient vitamin D levels in their blood compared to those who didn't has been found by scientists.
 Death Risk Increased by Lack of Vitamin D in Patients With Leukemia
Death Risk Increased by Lack of Vitamin D in Patients With Leukemia
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Mayo Clinic researchers found that patients with insufficient levels of vitamin D when their leukemia was diagnosed progressed much faster and were about twice as likely to die as were patients with adequate levels of vitamin D, reports Newswise.

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The finding is significant in a number of ways. For the first time, it potentially offers patients with this typically slower growing form of leukemia a way to slow progression, says the study's lead author, Tait Shanafelt, a hematologist at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.

While the researchers have not yet determined if vitamin D replacement in patients with initially low levels will reverse the more rapid progression associated with insufficiency, they are planning a study to explore that hypothesis.

This research adds to the growing body of evidence that vitamin D deficiency is a risk factor for development and/or progression of a number of cancers, the researchers say.

The study has been published online in the journal Blood.

Source: ANI
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