Using newly available worldwide data, researchers have shown a clear association between deficiency in exposure to sunlight and endometrial cancer.
The UV-B radiation in sunlight triggers photosynthesis of vitamin D3 in the body. Previous studies have shown associations between higher levels of vitamin D3 and lower risk of cancers of the breast, colon, kidney and ovary.
The new study used a new tool called GLOBOCAN, a database of cancer incidence, mortality and prevalence for 175 countries. Endometrial cancer incidence was higher at higher latitudes, even after controlling for known variables such as cloud cover and weight.
This is the third environmental paper from this research team to show a strong association between vitamin D and cancer using GLOBOCAN. The first paper showed a similar pattern for kidney cancer, and the second showed such a pattern for ovarian cancer.
* Science Daily November 16, 2007