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Racial lung cancer models aid predictions

disclaimer: image is for illustration purposes only
by Staff Writers
Houston (UPI) Sep 9, 2008
U.S. medical scientists say they've developed the first lung cancer risk model for African-Americans.

In the first study to focus on African-Americans, University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center researchers found unique results based on increased exposure to certain risks.

"African-Americans have similar risk factors for lung cancer as Caucasians, but the risks tend to be higher and there is a stronger association with occupational exposures żż than we have previously observed for whites," said Assistant Professor Carol Etzel. Additionally, the scientists said they found risks associated with such diseases as emphysema are substantially higher than those in Caucasian subjects and raise a person's risk of lung cancer.

"The challenge for us is to try to predict which of the United States' estimated 45 million current smokers and 46 million former smokers are at highest risk for developing lung cancer," said Dr. Margaret Spitz, a professor in M.D. Anderson's Department of Epidemiology.

The previously published lung cancer risk model was based solely on Caucasian lung cancer cases and controls. The researchers said their new African-American group-specific model's predictive power approached 79 percent, versus 66 percent for the original model.

The study appears in the journal Cancer Prevention Research.

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Melting Swiss glacier yields Neolithic trove, climate secrets
Bern (AFP) Sept 5, 2008
Some 5,000 years ago, on a day with weather much like today's, a prehistoric person tread high up in what is now the Swiss Alps, wearing goat leather pants, leather shoes and armed with a bow and arrows.

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