Despite the documented antioxidant and chemopreventive properties of selenium, studies of selenium intake and supplementation and cardiovascular disease have yielded inconsistent findings. The authors examined the effect of selenium supplementation (200 microg daily) on cardiovascular disease incidence and mortality through the entire blinded phase of the Nutritional Prevention of Cancer Trial (1983-1996) among participants who were free of cardiovascular disease at baseline (randomized to selenium: n = 504; randomized to placebo: n = 500). Selenium supplementation was not significantly associated with any of the cardiovascular disease endpoints during 7.6 years of follow-up (all cardiovascular disease: hazard ratio (HR) = 1.03, 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.78, 1.37; myocardial infarction: HR = 0.94, 95% CI: 0.61, 1.44; stroke: HR = 1.02, 95% CI: 0.63, 1.65; all cardiovascular disease mortality: HR = 1.22, 95% CI: 0.76, 1.95). The lack of significant association with cardiovascular disease endpoints was also confirmed when analyses were further stratified by tertiles of baseline plasma selenium concentrations. These findings indicate no overall effect of selenium supplementation on the primary prevention of cardiovascular disease in this population.