Causes, Diet: Diet and Cancer, Nelson clip 1

Professor Nelson discusses how ecological epidemiology evidence is utilized to determine cancer susceptibility.

William Nelson, M.D., Ph.D. is a researcher at the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins. HIs research focuses on the molecular causes involved in the development of prostate cancer. This has led to the discoveries that inflammation, diet, and gene "silencing" have roles in prostate cancer development. “Well there's one piece of what's called ecological epidemiology evidence that's very strong and dominates many of our thinking, much of our thinking about prostate cancer. And that's a man born in rural Asia, who lives his life in rural Asia, is very unlikely to develop prostate cancer and very unlikely to die from the disease. Now granted they don't screen for prostate cancer there, but mortality rates are reasonably solid that they're very unlikely to die from prostate cancer. And yet when Asian men immigrate to the Western world – so there's been a nice study done where they immigrate to North America – they begin to adopt a risk of prostate cancer that is more consistent with Caucasians and other residents of North America than the area which they left. And they adopt it quickly. If they were here ten years or less, the risk is like they never left Asia, if they're here 25 years or more their prostate cancer mortality risk is about half that of Caucasians. Ethnic Asian men born in this country have a risk that is very close to that of Caucasians. This very strongly suggests that there is something in the environment that is driving the epidemic of prostate cancer in the Western world.”

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  • ID: 979
  • Source: DNALC.IC

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