Meta-Analysis of Animal Experiments: Elucidating Relationships Between Dietary Fat and Mammary Tumor Development in Rodents
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
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- 1.Light, R.J. and D.B. Pillemer, Summing Up: The Science of Reviewing Research, Harvard University Press, Cambridge (1984).Google Scholar
- 4.Howe, G.R., T. Hirohata, T.G. Hislop, J.M. Iscovich, J.-M. Yuan, K. Katsouyanni, F. Lubin, E. Marubini, B. Modan, T. Rohan, P. Toniolo, and Y. Shunzhang, Dietary factors and risk of breast cancer: combined analysis of 12 case-control studies, J. Natl. Cancer Inst. 82:561 (1990).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- 5.Freedman, L.S., Meta-analysis of animal experiments on dietary fat intake and mammary tumors, Stat. Med. (in press).Google Scholar
- 7.Tannenbaum, A., The genesis and growth of tumors. III. Effects of a high-fat diet, Cancer Res. 2:468 (1942).Google Scholar
- 8.Tannenbaum, A., The dependence of tumor formation on the degree of caloric restriction, Cancer Res. 5:609(1945).Google Scholar
- 10.Carroll, K.K., Introduction to Session I, Part B, Section 2, Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 45:216 (1987).Google Scholar
- 11.Boutwell, R.K., An overview of the role of diet and nutrition in carcinogenesis, in: Nutrition, Growth and Cancer, G.P. Trufiates and K.N. Prasad, eds., Alan R. Liss, New York (1988).Google Scholar
- 21.Hopkins, G.J., T.G. Kennedy, and K.K. Carroll, Polyunsaturated fatty acids as promoters of mammary carcinogenesis in Sprague-Dawley rats by 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene-induced breast cancer in rats, J. Nutr. 114:1213 (1984).Google Scholar