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Large study reveals increased cancer risks associated with family history of the disease
Date:7/24/2013

A family history of cancer increases the risk of other members of the family developing not only the same cancer (known as a concordant cancer) but also a different (discordant) cancer, according to a large study of 23,000 people in Italy and Switzerland.

The research, published in the leading cancer journal Annals of Oncology [1] today (Thursday), provides a comprehensive picture of the risk of developing various different types of cancer in families where there is a history of the disease, and is one of the few large studies of this kind that takes into account other important factors, such as individual characteristics and lifestyles, that could affect the degree of risk as well.

Results from the study supported known associations, such as the increased risk of developing the same cancer as a close relative, and the 1.5-fold increased risk of breast cancer in women with a history of colorectal cancer in the family. However, the study also found a 3.3-fold increased risk of developing oral and pharyngeal cancer among people who had a first-degree relative with cancer of the larynx, and a four-fold increased risk of cancer of the gullet (oesophageal cancer) where a first-degree relative had oral or pharyngeal cancer. If a first-degree relative had breast cancer, female family members had a 2.3-fold increased risk of ovarian cancer. Family members had a 3.4-fold increased risk of prostate cancer if a first-degree relative had bladder cancer.

The researchers from Italy, Switzerland and France looked at 12,000 cases of cancer occurring in 13 different cancer sites (mouth and pharynx, nasopharynx, oesophagus, stomach, colorectum, liver, pancreas, larynx, breast, womb, ovaries, prostate and kidneys) between 1991 and 2009. They matched them with 11,000 people without cancer, and collected information on any cancer in the family, particularly in a first-degree relative, age at diagnosis, sociodemographic characteristics, body shape,
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Contact: Emma Mason
wordmason@mac.com
European Society for Medical Oncology
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2 3

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