Diabetes and risk of pancreatic cancer: A pooled analysis from the pancreatic cancer cohort consortium

Joanne W. Elena, Emily Steplowski, Kai Yu, Patricia Hartge, Geoffrey S. Tobias, Michelle J. Brotzman, Stephen J. Chanock, Rachael Z. Stolzenberg-Solomon, Alan A. Arslan, H. Bas Bueno-De-Mesquita, Kathy Helzlsouer, Eric J. Jacobs, Andrea Lacroix, Gloria Petersen, Wei Zheng, Demetrius Albanes, Naomi E. Allen, Laufey Amundadottir, Ying Bao, Heiner BoeingMarie Christine Boutron-Ruault, Julie E. Buring, J. Michael Gaziano, Edward L. Giovannucci, Eric J. Duell, Göran Hallmans, Barbara V. Howard, David J. Hunter, Amy Hutchinson, Kevin B. Jacobs, Charles Kooperberg, Peter Kraft, Julie B. Mendelsohn, Dominique S. Michaud, Domenico Palli, Lawrence S. Phillips, Kim Overvad, Alpa V. Patel, Leah Sansbury, Xiao Ou Shu, Michael S. Simon, Nadia Slimani, Dimitrios Trichopoulos, Kala Visvanathan, Jarmo Virtamo, Brian M. Wolpin, Anne Zeleniuch-Jacquotte, Charles S. Fuchs, Robert N. Hoover, Myron Gross

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

96 Scopus citations


Purpose: Diabetes is a suspected risk factor for pancreatic cancer, but questions remain about whether it is a risk factor or a result of the disease. This study prospectively examined the association between diabetes and the risk of pancreatic adenocarcinoma in pooled data from the NCI pancreatic cancer cohort consortium (PanScan). Methods: The pooled data included 1,621 pancreatic adenocarcinoma cases and 1,719 matched controls from twelve cohorts using a nested case-control study design. Subjects who were diagnosed with diabetes near the time (<2 years) of pancreatic cancer diagnosis were excluded from all analyses. All analyses were adjusted for age, race, gender, study, alcohol use, smoking, BMI, and family history of pancreatic cancer. Results: Self-reported diabetes was associated with a forty percent increased risk of pancreatic cancer (OR = 1.40, 95 % CI: 1.07, 1.84). The association differed by duration of diabetes; risk was highest for those with a duration of 2-8 years (OR = 1.79, 95 % CI: 1.25, 2.55); there was no association for those with 9+ years of diabetes (OR = 1.02, 95 % CI: 0.68, 1.52). Conclusions: These findings provide support for a relationship between diabetes and pancreatic cancer risk. The absence of association in those with the longest duration of diabetes may reflect hypoinsulinemia and warrants further investigation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)13-25
Number of pages13
JournalCancer Causes and Control
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2013

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgments The authors thank the investigators from the PanScan Cohort Consortium centers and the study participants, without whom this study would have not been possible. This project has been funded in whole or in part with federal funds from the National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, under Contract No. HHSN261200800001E. The content of this publication does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Department of Health and Human Services, nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government. The Alpha-Tocopherol, Beta-Carotene Cancer Prevention Trial was supported by funding provided by the Intramural Research Program of the National Cancer Institute, and the U.S. Public Health Service contracts [(N01-CN-45165, N01-RC-45035, N01-RC-37004]. CLUE II was supported by National Institute of Aging [5U01AG018033] and National Cancer Institute [CA105069, CA73790]. European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition was supported by the European Commission: Public Health and Consumer Protection Directorate 1993–2004; Research Directorate-General 2005; Ligue contre le Cancer; Societé 3 M; Mutuelle Générale de l’Education Na-tionale; Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (IN-SERM) (France); German Cancer Aid, German Cancer Research Center, Federal Ministry of Education and Research (Germany); Danish Cancer Society (Denmark); Health Research Fund (FIS) of the Spanish Ministry of Health, The participating regional governments and institutions (Spain); Cancer Research UK, Medical Research Council, Stroke Association, British Heart Foundation, Department of Health, Food Standards Agency, the Wellcome Trust (United Kingdom); Greek Ministry of Health and Social Solidarity, Hellenic Health Foundation and Stavros Niarchos Foundation (Greece); Italian Association for Research on Cancer (AIRC) (Italy); Dutch Ministry of Public Health, Welfare and Sports, Dutch Prevention Funds, LK Research Funds, Dutch ZON (Zorg Onderzoek Nederland) (the Netherlands); Swedish Cancer Society, Swedish Scientific Council, Regional Government of Skane and Västerbotten (Sweden); World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF). The New York University Women’s Health Study is supported by the National Cancer Institute research grants [R01CA034588, R01CA098661, P30CA016087] and the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Center grant [ES000260]. The Nurses’ Health Study is supported by the National Cancer Institute research grants P01CA087969 and R01CA124908. The Health Professional’s Follow-up Study is supported by P01CA055075 and R01CA124908. The Physician’s Health Study by R01CA097193 and R01CA124908. The Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, Ovarian Cancer Screening Trial was supported by contracts from the National Cancer Institute [University of Colorado Denver, NO1-CN-25514, Georgetown University NO1-CN-25522, Pacific Health Research Institute NO1-CN-25515, Henry Ford Health System NO1-CN-25512, University of Minnesota, NO1-CN-25513, Washington University NO1-CN-25516, University of Pittsburgh NO1-CN-25511, University of Utah NO1-CN-25524 Marshfield Clinic Research Foundation NO1-CN-25518, University of Alabama at Birmingham NO1-CN-75022, Westat, Inc. NO1-CN-25476, University of California, Los Angeles NO1-CN-25404]. The PLCO Study is sponsored by National Cancer Institute’s Division of Cancer Prevention, in collaboration with the Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics. The Shanghai Men’s and Women’s Health Studies were supported by the National Cancer Institute extramural research grants [R01CA82729, R01CA70867, R01CA124908] and by the Intramural Research Program of National Cancer Institute (Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics). The Women’s Health Initiative is funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute through contracts [N01WH22110, 24152, 32100-2, 32105-6, 32108-9, 32111-13, 32115, 32118-32119, 32122, 42107-26, 42129-32, and 44221]. Role of the Sponsors: This project has been funded with federal funds from the National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health. The funding agency had no role in the conduct of the study, the interpretation of the data, or the decision to submit the manuscript for publication.


  • Cohort consortium
  • Diabetes
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Risk factor


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