Science
6:30 am
Mon May 21, 2012

WashU study says folic acid may fight childhood cancer

A new study by Washington University indicates that folic acid may be responsible for reductions in certain kinds of childhood cancer.

Kimberly Johnson is an Assistant Professor of Public Health at Washington University, she says  folic acid has been a supplement in enriched grains since 1998.

“The study says that there is a correlation between fortification of the food supply,  with folic acid and a reduction in the incidence of some types of childhood cancer,” says Johnson.

Johnson says the study analyzed data from over 8000 children and showed a correlation between the introduction of folic acid to food and a reduction in Wilms’ tumors, a type of kidney cancer, and primitive neuroectodermal tumors (PNET), a type of brain cancer.

The study did not discover an adverse affects of folic acid supplementation, which Johnson says is good news for other countries who are concerned about adding the vitamin to their food supply.

The study is published in the current issue of Pediatrics.