Polluted Areas May Increase The Risk Of Cancer, Study Says

Posted: May 9 2017, 3:27pm CDT | by , in News | Latest Science News

Polluted Areas may Increase the Risk of Cancer, Study Says
Photo Credit: Getty Images

Poor environmental quality is linked to elevated cancer incidence

Where you live appears to have an effect on your cancer risk.

A new research suggests that people who in areas with overall poor environmental quality are at higher risk of developing cancer. Poor environmental quality including air, water and land pollution is strongly associated with specific types of cancer like prostate and breast cancer.

“Most research has focused on single environmental factors like air pollution or toxins in water. But these single factors don’t paint a comprehensive picture of what a person is exposed to in their environment – and may not be as helpful in predicting cancer risk, which is impacted by multiple factors including the air you breathe, the water you drink, the neighborhood you live in and your exposure to myriad toxins, chemicals and pollutants.” Jyotsna Jagai, a professor of environmental and occupational health in the University of Illinois at Chicago and lead author of the study said.

To investigate the overall effect of an environment, researchers used an Environmental Quality Index of US and attempted to link it with cancer incidence rate. Environmental Quality Index looks at hundreds of variables like air quality, water pollution, neighborhood safety, food and other socioeconomic factors to determine overall environmental quality. The analysis is often used by researchers who study the environment and its effects on human health.

When researchers examined the annul cancer incidence rate for each county in the US, they found an average of 451 cases per 100,000 people. Counties with poor environmental quality had higher incidence of cancer, on average 39 more cases per 100,000, compared to the counties with better environmental quality. Increased rate was observed in both male and female populations while the strongest association with seen in developed areas.

“These data are fundamental to documenting which communities are most vulnerable of high cancer rates and which geographically determined factors may be driving community level disparities.” Authors wrote.

This is the first study to analyze the impact of cumulative bad environment on cancer incidence and may help reduce cancer rate in areas with higher pollution levels.

Scarlett Lin Gomez, a research scientist at the Cancer Prevention Institute of California in Fremont says. “Studies such as this give us the tools to indentify the ‘where’ and the ‘what’ we should be focusing on.”

This story may contain affiliate links.


Find rare products online! Get the free Tracker App now.

Download the free Tracker app now to get in-stock alerts on Pomsies, Oculus Go, SNES Classic and more.

Latest News


The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/47" rel="author">Hira Bashir</a>
The latest discoveries in science are the passion of Hira Bashir (). With years of experience, she is able to spot the most interesting new achievements of scientists around the world and cover them in easy to understand reporting.




comments powered by Disqus