Aspirin may avert glioma
Aspirin use is associated with a lower risk of glioma, according to data from the Glioma International Case-Control Study (GICC).
GICC involved 4,533 glioma patients and 4,171 healthy controls who were then interviewed regarding their use of aspirin and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Regular use was defined as use at least once per week for ≥6 months. Researchers applied restricted maximum likelihood meta-regression models to aggregate site-specific estimates and to combine GICC estimates with previously published studies.
A total of 1,641 participants were regular aspirin users: 764 (19.0 percent) glioma patients and 877 (22.7 percent) controls. Major indications included headaches, muscle/joint aches and cardioprevention. On the other hand, 542 (13.9 percent) patients and 533 (14.6 percent) controls reported regular NSAID use.
A history of daily aspirin use for ≥6 months was associated with a 38-percent decrease in the risk of glioma compared with nonuse (adjusted meta-odds ratio [mOR], 0.62; 95 percent CI, 0.54–0.70). Moreover, a significant duration-response trend was observed (p=1.67×10−17), with lower ORs for increasing duration of aspirin use. This trend was not seen for NSAID use.
In the meta-analysis pooling GICC data with five previous studies, a marginally significant association between use of aspirin and glioma emerged (mOR, 0.84; 0.70–1.02) but none for NSAID use.
Researchers noted that the reduced glioma risk associated with regular aspirin use is consistent with reports from previous studies, and that the duration-response trend observed provides a strong rationale for further investigation. [Eur J Epidemiol 2016;31:917-925; Int J Cancer 2012;131:E1031-E1037]
Further studies that utilize more comprehensive exposure assessment strategies and investigate each NSAID separately in order to account for differences in COX-2 selectivity or pharmacological properties are needed.