Sexual dimorphism in obesity related cancer risk

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


In the past decades disadvantageous changes in lifestyle caused a steady increase in average body weight, especially in the economically developed countries. Excessive adipose tissue deposition, particularly in visceral location may be regarded as a metabolically active endocrine organ inducing dysmetabolism and associated hormonal imbalances. Gender related similarities and differences in overall and site specific obesity related cancer incidence may provide revelation of associations among fatness, sexual hormone imbalance and cancer initiation. Male to female ratio of adiposity related cancer incidence may be highly influenced by the types of included malignancies, the age distribution of cases and controls and the ratio of examined pre- and postmenopausal women. Obesity and overweight cause deleterious metabolic and hormonal alterations in both male and female patients. In women, obesity associated excessive androgen and defective estrogen synthesis seem to be strong cancer risk factors in both pre- and postmenopausal cases, especially for the female organs. These organs exhibit active cell proliferation, which requires strict hormonal survaillance against mitotic failures and cancer initiation. In men, obesity associated insulin resistance and hyperinsulinemia are high risks for cancer at several sites. At the same time, obesity related diminished estrogen exposure exhibits no conspicuous additive carcinogenic effect on the male organs as their physiologic function requires much lower serum estrogen concentrations as compared with female organs. Recognition of dangerous alterations in the male to female sexual steroid levels in obesity may open new possibilities for the prevention and treatment of obesity by the compensatory restoration of metabolic and hormonal equilibrium.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRecent Avenue to Cancer Prevention
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Number of pages17
ISBN (Print)9781629487120, 9781629486703
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Sexual dimorphism in obesity related cancer risk'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this

    Suba, Z. (2014). Sexual dimorphism in obesity related cancer risk. In Recent Avenue to Cancer Prevention (pp. 41-57). Nova Science Publishers, Inc..