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University of Iowa Health Care News Release

Feb. 16, 2004

IMPORTANT UPDATE [Posted Oct. 29, 2008] The SELECT study is no longer enrolling participants, and current study participants will no longer take study medication as of Oct. 27, 2008. Current study participants who would like more information may contact either Diane Meyerholz at or 319-356-1111 or Dr. Richard Williams at 319-356-0760.

UI Invites Men To Take Part In Prostate Cancer Prevention Study

University of Iowa Health Care researchers invite men in their fifties and older to participate in a study of whether selenium (a mineral) or vitamin E supplements can help prevent prostate cancer.

The UI is one of more than 400 sites participating in this National Cancer Institute (NCI) study, which is known as SELECT -- the Selenium and Vitamin E Cancer Prevention Trial.

Eligible men must never have had prostate cancer and be age 55 or older, or age 50 or older for African-American men. In addition, participants must not have had any other cancer (except for skin cancer) for the last five years.

Participants will receive either selenium, vitamin E, both substances or a placebo (an inactive pill) to take daily for seven to 12 years. Participants also will be asked to visit UI Hospitals and Clinics every six months to pick up new bottles of capsules and discuss their progress in the study.

SELECT is the first study to look directly at the effect of selenium and/or vitamin E on prostate cancer risk.

There were approximately 180,000 new cases of prostate cancer nationwide in 2000. For unknown reasons, the condition is more common among African-American men, who also tend to show signs of the disease earlier than men of other ethnic groups.

The study is being led by the Southwest Oncology Group, one of the largest of the NCI Clinical Trials Cooperative Groups.

For more information, call the UI Cancer Information Service at (800) 237-1225 or the UI SELECT research coordinator at 319-356-1111. Information also is available online at the SELECT Web site:

University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the UI Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine and UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care, medical education and research programs and services they provide. Visit UI Health Care online at

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Health Science Relations, 5137 Westlawn, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1178

CONTACTS: Study Participants: UI Cancer Information Service, 800-237-1225 or the UI SELECT research coordinator, 319-356-1111
[Media Only: Becky Soglin, 319-335-6660]