Latest Research Highlights: Zinc Use and Risk of Aggressive Prostate Cancer

Published in the European Journal of Epidemiology, 2022

Zinc supplement use and risk of aggressive prostate cancer: a 30-year follow-up study 

Yiwen Zhang, Mingyang Song, Lorelei Mucci, Edward Giovannucci

Zinc supplementation was hypothesized to have therapeutic potential against prostate cancer, but its influence on prostate cancer incidence especially at high doses is controversial. During a median follow up of 28.3 years, we documented 6,980 incident prostate cancer cases in the HPFS cohort. Zinc supplement use was not associated with risk of overall prostate cancers, or cancers that were still localized to the prostate cancer. However, compared to never-users, men who used supplement zinc more than 75 mg/day were at higher risk for lethal and aggressive forms of prostate cancer. Similarly, men who took supplemental zinc for 15 or more years had a higher risk for lethal and aggressive prostate cancer. In conclusion, zinc supplementation of more than 75 mg/day or over 15 years may substantially increase risk of lethal and aggressive prostate cancer. Caution is warranted regarding excessive usage of zinc supplements among adult men.