Meta-Analysis of Animal Experiments: Elucidating Relationships Between Dietary Fat and Mammary Tumor Development in Rodents
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Meta-analysis is a statistical method of quantitatively combining results from different studies pertaining to a specific research question.1 The method has also been called ‘Overview,’ ‘quantitative review,’ and ‘pooling.’ There is now a large and rapidly growing literature on its use in medical research. It has been particularly successfully used in summarizing the results of groups of randomized clinical trials that have been designed to address the same or almost the same therapeutic question. Two pioneering examples are the meta-analyses of trials assessing the effect of beta-blockers on mortality following myocardi-al infarction,2 and of tamoxifen on breast cancer recurrence and survival rates following surgery for early stage breast cancer.3 Use of meta-analysis in epidemiology is also increasing; an interesting example is the meta-analysis of case-control studies of dietary factors and breast cancer reported by Howe et al. 4 which showed a significant relationship between dietary fat intake and postmenopausal breast cancer.
KeywordsLinoleic Acid Mammary Tumor Essential Fatty Acid Tumor Incidence Linoleic Acid Content
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