In a meta-analysis of 7 case-control studies involving 5,789 cases and 14,866 controls, Yonggang Shang, MD, and colleagues at the Third Military Medical University in Chongquing, China, found that, overall, the highest dietary intake of vitamin E was associated with a significant 25% decreased risk of RCC compared with the lowest intake.
In European populations, the highest dietary intake of vitamin E was associated with a significant 42% decreased risk of RCC, the investigators reported in the Journal of Renal Nutrition (2015;25:339-344). The researchers found no association between dietary vitamin E intake and RCC risk in North American populations. The significant inverse association between dietary vitamin E intake and RCC risk did not differ by gender.
The mechanisms by which vitamin E impacts cancer risk are unknown, but vitamin E is a well known antioxidant that has been reported to inhibit tissue lipid peroxidation, apoptosis, 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine formation, and cancer development, the authors pointed out. In addition, it plays an important role in protecting DNA from fragmentation.