Influence of obesity on breast density reduction by omega-3 fatty acids: Evidence from a randomized clinical trial

Narinder Sandhu, Susann E. Schetter, Jason Liao, Terryl J. Hartman, John P. Richie, John McGinley, Henry J. Thompson, Bogdan Prokopczyk, Cynthia DuBrock, Carina Signori, Christopher Hamilton, Ana Calcagnotto, Neil Trushin, Cesar Aliaga, Laurence M. Demers, Karam El-Bayoumy, Andrea Manni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Preclinical data indicate that omega-3 fatty acids (n-3FA) potentiate the chemopreventive effect of the antiestrogen (AE) tamoxifen against mammary carcinogenesis. The role of n-3FA in breast cancer prevention in humans is controversial. Preclinical and epidemiologic data suggest that n-3FA may be preferentially protective in obese subjects. To directly test the protective effect of n-3FA against breast cancer, we conducted a 2-year, open-label randomized clinical trial in 266 healthy postmenopausal women (50% normal weight, 30% overweight, 20% obese) with high breast density (BD; ≥25%) detected on their routine screening mammograms. Eligiblewomenwere randomized to one of the following five groups (i) no treatment, control; (ii) raloxifene 60 mg; (iii) raloxifene 30 mg; (iv) n-3FA lovaza 4 g; and (v) lovaza 4 g plus raloxifene 30 mg. The 2-year change in BD, a validated biomarker of breast cancer risk, was the primary endpoint of the study. In subset analysis, we tested the prespecified hypothesis that body mass index (BMI) influences the relationship between plasma n-3FA on BD. While none of the interventions affected BD in the intention-to-treat analysis, increase in plasma DHA was associated with a decrease in absolute breast density but only in participants with BMI >29. Our results suggest that obese women may preferentially experience breast cancer risk reduction from n-3FA administration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)275-282
Number of pages8
JournalCancer Prevention Research
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'Influence of obesity on breast density reduction by omega-3 fatty acids: Evidence from a randomized clinical trial'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this