Published online Jul 28, 2014. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v20.i28.9600
Revised: February 17, 2014
Accepted: May 23, 2014
Published online: July 28, 2014
AIM: To conduct a systematic review of the published epidemiological studies investigating the association of the interactions between gene variants and dietary intake with gastric cancer risk.
METHODS: A literature search was conducted in PubMed, EMBASE, and MEDLINE for articles published between January 2000 and July 2013, and 38 studies were identified. Previous studies included various dietary factors (e.g., fruits and vegetables, soybean products, salt, meat, and alcohol) and genetic variants that are involved in various metabolic pathways.
RESULTS: Studies suggest that individuals who carry high-risk genetic variants and demonstrate particular dietary habits may have an increased risk of gastric cancer compared with those who do not carry high-risk genetic variants. Distinctive dietary patterns and variations in the frequency of genetic variants may explain the higher incidence of gastric cancer in a particular region. However, most previous studies have limitations, such as a small sample size and a retrospective case-control design. In addition, past studies have been unable to elucidate the specific mechanism in gene-diet interaction associated with gastric carcinogenesis.
CONCLUSION: Additional large prospective epidemiological and experimental studies are required to identify the gene-diet metabolic pathways related to gastric cancer susceptibility.
Core tip: Gene-diet interactions related to gastric carcinogenesis may provide a unique environment for cancer growth or suppression in each individual. Gene-diet interactions may explain the large variation in gastric cancer incidence in different populations and the inconsistent findings of previous gene or diet studies. Therefore, this review provides an overview of the published epidemiological studies that have investigated the interactions between gene variants and dietary factors associated with gastric cancer risk.