Am J Clin Nutr. 1984 Oct; 40(4 Suppl): 949-51.
Diet, nutrition intake, and metabolism in populations at high and low risk for colon cancer. Comparison of serum hexosaminidase levels.
Elevated levels of serum hexosaminidase (beta-2-acetamido-2-deoxy-D-glucoside; N-acetamidodeoxy-D-glucohydrolase, EC 18.104.22.168)(HEX) have been found in patients with cancer. In view of the reported low levels of colon cancer among Seventh-day Adventists (SDA) we determined levels of total HEX, and its heat-labile (HEX-A) and heat-stable (HEX-B) isozymes in vegetarian SDA, lacto-ovo vegetarian SDA, nonvegetarian SDA, and the general public. Lowest levels of total HEX and highest percentage of HEX-B were found in vegetarian SDA. The levels in the other three groups were comparable, and these differences were seen at all age levels. Female subjects exhibited significantly lower total HEX levels than the males but the percentage of HEX-B was the same.