Prostate cancer in native Japanese and Japanese-American men: Effects of dietary differences on prostatic tissue

Leonard S. Marks, Munekado Kojima, Angelo Demarzo, David Heber, David G. Bostwick, Junqi Qian, Frederick J. Dorey, Robert W. Veltri, James L. Mohler, Alan W. Partin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


Objectives. To investigate the relationship between diet and prostate cancer (CaP) among native Japanese (NJ) and second-generation or third-generation Japanese-American (J-A) men - focusing on the effects of animal fat and soy on prostatic tissues. The subjects were 50 Japanese men undergoing radical prostatectomy, 25 NJ living in Nagoya, Japan and 25 U.S.-born J-A men, living in Los Angeles, California. A priori, the NJ men were believed to be a low-fat, high-soy group and the J-A men, a high-fat, low-soy group. The studies included postoperative measurements of diet (Block questionnaire), body fat (bioimpedance), blood, urine, and prostatic biomarkers in malignant and adjacent normal tissue, using a tissue microarray made from the original paraffin blocks. The NJ and J-A men were similar in age (65 to 70 years old; P <0.05), prostate-specific antigen level (7.1 to 8.6 ng/mL), prostate volume (35 to 38 cm 3), and Gleason score (5.6 to 6.6), but their body composition differed. J-A men had more body fat (24% versus 19%), higher serum triglyceride levels (245 versus 106 mg/dL), lower estradiol levels (27 versus 31 ng/mL), and much lower urinary soy-metabolite levels (1:3) than NJ men (P <0.02). In both NJ and J-A groups, expression of numerous tissue biomarkers separated normal from CaP tissue, including markers for apoptosis (Bcl-2, caspase-3), growth factor receptors (epidermal growth factor receptor), racemase, 5-lipoxygenase, kinase inhibition (p27), and cell proliferation (Ki-67; all P <0.02). Furthermore, within both normal and CaP tissues, caspase-3 and 5-lipoxygenase were expressed more in NJ than in J-A men (P <0.01). Nuclear morphometry showed that the chromatin in each of the four groups (normal versus CaP, NJ versus J-A) was different (area under the curve 85% to 94%, P <0.01), despite fundamental genetic homogeneity. NJ and J-A men, products of similar genetics but differing environments, were shown to have differences in body composition that could influence CaP evolution. The CaP specimens from the NJ and J-A men were histologically similar, but tissue biomarker expression, especially of lipoxygenase and the caspase family, suggested differing mechanisms of carcinogenesis. Differences in nuclear morphometry suggested the additional possibility of gene-nutrient interactions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)765-771
Number of pages7
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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