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Obesity is reaching epidemic levels worldwide. Incidence rates of many types of cancers including colon cancer, the fourth most common cancer type, are increased substantially in obese individuals. Many known risk factors for colorectal cancer development are altered in obesity, including increased blood levels of insulin, insulin-like growth factor (IGF), leptin, interleukin 6 (IL6), tumour necrosis factor α (TNFα) and a decreased blood level of adiponectin (table 1). These risk factors can, in turn, activate intracellular signal pathways such as phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K)/Akt, mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) and RhoA, which play an important role in the carcinogenesis …
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