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Whether vitamin E can lower people's risk for developing cancer may depend on a genetic variant. According to UPI, a gene known as catechol-O-methyltransferase plays a critical role in the matter. While some studies showed vitamin E had a beneficial effect, clinical trials that did not use placebos showed no benefits. That led researchers to believe vitamin E was always ineffective. Now, they say, they were wrong. What we've found is that it may have been protective in some and not in others, and that genetic variation is linked to these outcomes. Kathryn Hall, Researcher Division of Preventive Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital