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Choline May Help Reduce Breast Cancer

December 2, 2008: 05:45 PM EST
Pregnant mothers who eat foods containing choline, such as eggs, reduce the chances that their babies will later develop breast cancer, say biologists from Boston University. The study is the first to link choline consumption during pregnancy to breast cancer, and to identify possible choline-related genetic changes that affect breast cancer survival rates. Pregnant rats were divided into three groups, and fed diets containing standard amounts of choline, no choline, or extra choline. Female offspring were then treated with a chemical that causes breast cancer. All the treated offspring developed the cancer, but those whose mothers had a high-choline diet developed slower-growing tumors than the others. The slow growing tumors had a genetic pattern similar to the pattern in breast cancers of women who are considered to have a good prognosis. The fast-growing tumors were similar to those seen in women with a more aggressive form of the disease. The researchers say that the genetic changes may result from the way that choline affects modifications of the DNA within the mammary gland of fetuses as they develop in the womb.
"Eating Eggs When Pregnant Affects Breast Cancer in Offspring", December 02, 2008, © CNS Media BV
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