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Aspirin as a Chemoprevention Agent for Colorectal Cancer

[ Vol. 13 , Issue. 9 ]


Chun Seng Lee, Deirdre McNamara and Colm A. O’Morain   Pages 1313 - 1322 ( 10 )


Colorectal cancer (CRC) is one of the leading causes of mortality in the western world. It is widely accepted that neoplasms such as colonic polyps are precursors to CRC formation; with the polyp-adenoma-carcinoma sequences well described in medical literature [1, 2]. It has been shown that Aspirin and other non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) have a negative effect on polyp and cancer formation. This review aims to describe some of the mechanism behind the chemoprotective properties of aspirin; COX 2 inhibition, regulation of proliferation and apoptosis and effects on the immune system and also the current evidence that supports its use as a chemoprevention agent against CRC. We will also aim to explore the side effects with the use of aspirin and the pitfalls of using aspirin routinely for primary prophylaxis against CRC.


Aspirin, colorectal cancer, chemoprevention, cyclooxygenase


Department of Clinical Medicine, Trinity Centre for Health sciences, Adelaide and Meath, Hospital, Dublin, Ireland.

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