Although there are several plausible biologic mechanisms whereby coffee consumption might influence the risk of breast cancer, epidemiologic evidence is limited. We assessed the association between coffee consumption and breast cancer risk among high-risk women who carry BRCA mutations. We performed a matched case-control analysis on 1,690 women with a BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation from 40 centers in 4 countries. Average lifetime coffee consumption was estimated via a self-administered questionnaire. Odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were estimated using conditional logistic regression. After adjustment for potential confounders, the ORs for breast cancer in BRCA carriers who habitually drank 0, 1-3, 4-5 and 6 or more cups of coffee were 1.00, 0.90 (95% CI 0.72-1.12), 0.75 (95% CI 0.47-1.19) and 0.31 (95% CI 0.13-0.71; p-trend = 0.02). The effect was limited to the consumption of caffeinated coffee. These results suggest that among women with BRCA gene mutation, coffee consumption is unlikely to be harmful and that high levels of consumption may in fact be related to reduced breast cancer risk.
Copyright 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.