- Brain tumor affects nearly 14.4 per 100,000 persons on an annual
fatty acids (PUFAs) found in fish are reported to be essential for brain
and intelligence development especially in children.
- Some studies
have shown that fish intake was associated with lower risk of brain tumor.
is a mass of abnormal cells in your brain, which could be malignant (cancerous) or benign (non-cancerous) and
could be life-threatening.
not only a good source of protein but is also low in fat, high in unsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids. The polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) found in
fish is thought to be beneficial in reducing the risk of many types of cancer
including colorectal, lung, breast, prostate amongst others. Marine fish
contains plenty of omega-3 fatty acids, including docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)
and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA),
‘Fish is rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids and is known to exert a host of health benefits and neuroprotective properties.’
Some studies have shown that PUFAs
can exhibit anti-tumor effects by inducing apoptosis, inhibiting growth,
anti-angiogenesis or via enhancement of immune system
, however the evidence regarding fish intake
and brain tumor risk is still inconclusive.
The study focused on total fish intake, including fresh
and frozen fish. Smoked, pickled and salted fish was not included in the study.
- A meta-analysis
with dose-response analysis was conducted to study the association between
fish intake and brain cancer risk.
and EMBASE electronic databases were reviewed and pertinent studies were
- Nine observational studies (involving a total of 4428 brain cancer
cases and 501,617 participants) were included in the meta-analysis.
the nine observational studies, six studies were population-based
case-control studies, two were hospital-based case-control studies and one
was cohort study.
pooled relative risks (RR) were calculated using the fixed-effects model,
provided there was no heterogeneity observed amongst the studies.
meta-regression and publication bias analyses were also conducted.
pooled relative risk of brain cancer for the highest vs. lowest category
of fish intake was reported to be 0.83, with no significant heterogeneity.
analysis revealed that the relative risk (RR) per 100 g/week increase
in fish intake was 0.95.
- In the
subgroup and sensitivity analyses, the results remained unchanged.
- Thus results of the dose-response analysis showed that
fish intake might be associated with lower brain cancer risk.
- The study
involved a large sample size of 501,617 participants which included 4428
brain cancer patients.
- The study
was conducted over a long duration from 1986 to 2006.
analysis was conducted to quantify the association between fish intake and
brain tumor risk.
meta-analysis involved mostly low-quality case-control studies which were
subject to recall and selection bias.
involved only one prospective cohort study which showed null finding
between fish intake and risk of brain tumor
- There was
no adequate adjustment done for some factors which would potentially
influence the stability of the results such as irradiation exposure, total
energy intake, body mass index, amongst others.
- There was
lot of heterogeneity found amongst the studies including characteristics
of study population, sample size, follow-up duration and exposure levels
of fish intake.
meta-analysis results put forward the consideration that intake of fish could
lead to lower risk of brain cancer, however the findings need to be
substantiated in future with additional cohort studies with validated
questionnaires as well as having a strict control over confounding variables.