Phenolic compounds may exert a favorable effect on the risk of several cancer types, including gastric cancer (GC). However, selected polyphenol classes have not been adequately investigated in relation to GC. The aim of this study is to evaluate the association between the intake of polyphenols in relation to GC risk. We used data from the Stomach cancer Pooling (StoP) Project, including 10 studies from six countries (3471 GC cases and 8344 controls). We carried out an individual participant data pooled analysis using a two-stage approach. The summary odds ratios (ORs) of GC for each compound, and the corresponding 95% confidence intervals (95% CI), were computed by pooling study specific ORs obtained through multivariate logistic regression, using random effect models. Inverse associations with GC emerged for total polyphenols (OR = 0.67, 95% CI = 0.54-0.81, for the highest versus lowest quartile of intake), total flavonoids (OR = 0.73, 95% CI = 0.55-0.90), anthocyanidins (OR = 0.74, 95% CI = 0.56-0.92), flavanols (OR = 0.77, 95% CI = 0.66-0.88), flavanones (OR = 0.57, 95%CI = 0.44-0.69), total phenolic acids (OR = 0.75, 95%CI = 0.55-0.94), and hydroxybenzoic acids (OR = 0.73, 95%CI = 0.57-0.89). Results were consistent across strata of age, sex, social class, and smoking habit. Suggestive inverse associations were also found for flavonols (OR = 0.76, 95%CI = 0.51-1.01) and hydroxycinnamic acids (OR = 0.82, 95%CI = 0.58-1.06). Further investigations from longitudinal data are needed to confirm this association.
Keywords: diet; epidemiology; flavonoids; gastric cancer; polyphenols.