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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2012, 13(10), 12556-12572; doi:10.3390/ijms131012556

The Complexities of Epidemiology and Prevention of Gastrointestinal Cancers

1
Department of Pathology, Karmanos Cancer Institute, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI 48201, USA
2
Department of Oncology, Karmanos Cancer Institute, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI 48201, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 1 August 2012 / Revised: 27 August 2012 / Accepted: 27 August 2012 / Published: 1 October 2012
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Molecular Oncology (special issue))
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Abstract

Cancer epidemiology and prevention is one of the most well studied fields today. The more we can understand about the incidence and pathogenesis of this disease, the better we will be able to prevent it. Effective prevention strategies can decrease the mortality rate of cancer significantly; this is why it is important to delineate the underlying causes. It has been well recognized that genetic mutations, sporadic or hereditary, may lead to increased chance of tumorigenesis. Detecting genetic mutations can lead to the identification of high-risk individuals with hereditary cancer syndromes, which may assist in devising prevention strategies. Further, environmental factors are known to play important roles in epidemiology and suggest prevention tools that could be implemented to reduce cancer incidence and subsequent cancer-associated morbidity and mortality. Chemoprevention has been tried in colon cancer and is finding new advancements in other carcinomas as well. Out of many environmental cancer preventive agents, the most notable developments are the identification of the role of vitamins E, vitamin D and folic acid. Increased consumption of these vitamins has shown to be inversely correlated with cancer risk. This review will highlight important aspects of cancer epidemiology in the most aggressive carcinomas of the gastrointestinal system focusing on colorectal adenocarcinoma and pancreatic adenocarcinoma. Additionally, some of the well-known and evolving aspects of epidemiology of colorectal and pancreatic cancer along with current and new prevention strategies will also be reviewed.
Keywords: cancer epidemiology; prevention; pancreatic cancer; colon cancer cancer epidemiology; prevention; pancreatic cancer; colon cancer
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Haq, S.; Ali, S.; Mohammad, R.; Sarkar, F.H. The Complexities of Epidemiology and Prevention of Gastrointestinal Cancers. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2012, 13, 12556-12572.

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