Cancer Causes & Control volume 33, pages 921–928 (2022 )Cite this article
Prior epidemiological studies evaluating the association between fish intake and melanoma risk have been few and inconsistent. Few studies distinguished different types of fish intake with risk of melanoma.
We examined the associations between intake of total fish and specific types of fish and risk of melanoma among 491,367 participants in the NIH-AARP Diet and Health Study. We used multivariable-adjusted Cox proportional hazards regression to estimate hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs).
During 6,611,941 person-years of follow-up with a median of 15.5 years, 5,034 cases of malignant melanoma and 3,284 cases of melanoma in situ were identified. There was a positive association between higher total fish intake and risk of malignant melanoma (HR = 1.22, 95% CI = 1.11–1.34 for top vs. bottom quintiles, ptrend = 0.001) and melanoma in situ (HR = 1.28, CI = 1.13–1.44 for top vs. bottom quintiles, ptrend = 0.002). The positive associations were consistent across several demographic and lifestyle factors. There were also positive associations between tuna intake and non-fried fish intake, and risk of malignant melanoma and melanoma in situ. However, fried fish intake was inversely associated with risk of malignant melanoma, but not melanoma in situ.
We found that higher total fish intake, tuna intake, and non-fried fish intake were positively associated with risk of both malignant melanoma and melanoma in situ. Future studies are needed to investigate the potential biological mechanisms underlying these associations.