Calcium May Predict Prostate Cancer Mortality

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High serum levels of ionized calcium and total calcium are associated with an elevated risk of dying from prostate cancer, according to findings published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention (2009;575-578).

“These findings support the hypothesis that serum calcium is a prospective biomarker of fatal prostate cancer,” concluded researchers Halcyon G. Skinner, PhD, of the University of Wisconsin in Madison, and Gary G. Schwartz, PhD, MD, PhD, of Wake Forest University School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, N.C.

Men in the highest tertile of ionized serum calcium—the biologically active component of total serum calcium—were three times as likely as men in the lowest tertile to die from prostate cancer, the investigators reported. Men in the highest tertile of total serum calcium had a twofold increased risk of fatal prostate cancer, a finding that confirms previous research.

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