Ethanol intake and the risk of pancreatic cancer in the European prospective investigation into cancer and nutrition (EPIC)

Sabine Rohrmann*, Jakob Linseisen, Alina Vrieling, Paolo Boffetta, Rachael Z. Stolzenberg-Solomon, Albert B. Lowenfels, Majken K. Jensen, Kim Overvad, Anja Olsen, Anne Tjonneland, Marie Christine Boutron-Ruault, Francoise Clavel-Chapelon, G. Fagherazzi, Gesthimani Misirli, Pagona Lagiou, Antonia Trichopoulou, Rudolf Kaaks, Manuela M. Bergmann, Heiner Boeing, Sheila BinghamKay Tee Khaw, Naomi Allen, Andrew Roddam, Domenico Palli, Valeria Pala, Salvatore Panico, Rosario Tumino, Paolo Vineis, Petra H.M. Peeters, Anette Hjartåker, Eiliv Lund, Ma Luisa Redondo Cornejo, Antonio Agudo, Larraitz Arriola, Maria José Sánchez, María José Tormo, Aurelio Barricarte Gurrea, Björn Lindkvist, Jonas Manjer, Ingegerd Johansson, Weimin Ye, Nadia Slimani, Eric J. Duell, Mazda Jenab, Dominique S. Michaud, Traci Mouw, Elio Riboli, H. Bas Bueno-De-Mesquita

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

46 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To examine the association of baseline and lifetime ethanol intake with cancer of the pancreas in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC). Methods: Included in this analysis were 478,400 subjects, of whom detailed information on the intake of alcoholic beverages at baseline and over lifetime was collected between 1992 and 2000. During a median follow-up time of 8.9 years, 555 non-endocrine pancreatic cancer cases were observed. Multivariate Cox proportional hazard models were used to examine the association of ethanol intake at recruitment and average lifetime ethanol intake and pancreatic cancer adjusting for smoking, height, weight, and history of diabetes. Results: Overall, neither ethanol intake at recruitment (relative risk (RR) = 0.94, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.69-1.27 comparing 30+ g/d vs. 0.1-4.9 g/d) nor average lifetime ethanol intake (RR = 0.95, 95% CI 0.65-1.39) was associated with pancreatic cancer risk. High lifetime ethanol intake from spirits/liquor at recruitment tended to be associated with a higher risk (RR = 1.40, 95% CI 0.93-2.10 comparing 10+ g/d vs. 0.1-4.9 g/d), but no associations were observed for wine and beer consumption. Conclusion: These results suggest no association of alcohol consumption with the risk of pancreatic cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)785-794
Number of pages10
JournalCancer Causes and Control
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • EPIC
  • Epidemiology
  • Ethanol
  • Pancreatic cancer


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