The results of a meta-analysis published recently in the journal, Cancer Treatment Reviews, show that the use of statins by patients with kidney cancer improved cancer-specific survival and overall survival. However, there was no effect on recurrence-free or progression-free survival.

One of the researchers, Dr Madhur Nayan of the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, University Health Network and the University of Toronto, Canada, said “We found that patients with kidney cancer using statins had a 33% reduced risk of death from kidney cancer and 26% reduced risk of death from any cause, compared to patients not using statins. But there was no significant association between statin use and kidney cancer progression or recurrence.”

According to Dr Nayan, researchers are increasingly interested in statins as a potential anti-cancer drug, as many studies show that their use reduces cancer-related mortality. Yet studies of statins evaluating kidney cancer have had conflicting results. The current meta-analysis aimed to combine the results from existing kidney cancer studies.

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