[Frontiers in Bioscience S3, 555-564, January 1, 2011]

Obesity and thyroid cancer

Tamara Mijovic1, Jacques How2, Richard J. Payne1

1Department of Otolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, 2 Division of Endocrinology, Montreal General Hospital, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada


1. Abstract
2. Introduction
3. The Underlying Evidence
3.1. Population-based studies
3.1.1. Case-control studies
3.1.2. Prospective cohort studies
3.2. Sub-population-based studies
3.2.1. The obese population
3.2.2. The population with thyroid nodules
4. Pathogenesis - The Hypotheses
4.1. Endocrinology
4.1.1. Insulin and IGF-1
4.1.2. Cytokines Chronic inflammation COX-2 Leptin Adiponectin
4.1.3. Sex hormones
4.1.4. TSH
4.1.5. Vitamin D
4.2. Toxins
4.2.1. Diet and food
4.2.2. The storage hypothesis
5. Conclusion
6. References


With the current trend of alarming rise in obesity rates, the health impacts of excess weight will become more apparent. While an increased incidence of cardiovascular disease and diabetes mellitus has been well documented, the association between obesity and carcinogenesis is just being appreciated and is receiving increasing attention. The current review focuses on the evidence linking thyroid cancer with obesity. We conclude that there is sufficient evidence that obesity can predispose to an increased risk of thyroid cancer in both men and women. This population-based association is mainly explained at a biological level through specific obesity-related endocrinopathies.