The Role of Cruciferous Vegetables and Isothiocyanates for Lung Cancer Prevention: Current Status, Challenges, and Future Research Directions

Zhenzhen Zhang, Raymond Bergan, Jackilen Shannon, Christopher G. Slatore, Gerd Bobe, Yumie Takata

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

Lung cancer remains a leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States. Although smoking and air pollution exposure are primary risk factors of lung cancer, diet has also been reported to contribute to lung cancer risk. Cruciferous vegetables contain many bioactive compounds that alter the detoxification process of air-borne carcinogenic compounds and, thereby, may decrease lung cancer risk. In the meta-analysis of 31 observational studies, cruciferous vegetable intake is inversely associated with lung cancer risk (summary odds ratio/relative risk = 0.81 and 95% confidence interval = 0.74–0.89 for comparing the highest with lowest intake categories). More observational studies need to measure urinary isothiocyanate (ITC) concentrations and investigate their association with lung cancer risk in populations with relatively high intake of cruciferous vegetables. Current evidence is limited to two phase 2 clinical trials with incomplete reporting. Hence, more short-term clinical phase 2 trials need to examine effects of various amounts and types of cruciferous vegetables on biomarkers of risk and efficacy before a large phase 3 trial can be conducted to assess effects upon lung cancer risk. This would help further elucidate whether the inverse association observed with self-reported cruciferous vegetable intake is indeed due to ITC content or other bioactive compounds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1700936
JournalMolecular Nutrition and Food Research
Volume62
Issue number18
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2018

Keywords

  • clinical trials
  • cruciferous vegetables
  • isothiocyanates
  • lung cancer
  • observational studies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Food Science

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