致癌季节

当夏季又向我们走来,我们真该花点时间,了解一下太阳阴暗的一面。尽管是地球上所有生命的源泉,太阳也辐射出大量的致癌物质。具体地讲,我们现在知道太阳紫外线的辐射是多数皮肤癌的主要诱因。

长久以来,人们都认为对公众健康危害微不足道的皮肤癌如今也大有流行之势。今年一年,预计全美将新发恶性皮肤癌90,000例,超过8,000人会因此丧生;非恶性皮肤癌也将突破100万例,夺去另外2,000条无辜的生命。恶性皮肤癌已经成了24到35岁的当代女性中发病率最高的癌症。曾几何时,这种病只在五六十岁的男性中流行,而现在,20多岁的女性患基细胞或上皮细胞癌者并不罕见。

皮肤癌发病率大幅增长的同时,我们对这种疾病的理解也日益深入。50多年来,人们一直怀疑阳光中的紫外线辐射是皮肤癌的最大诱因。澳洲的流行病学数据、人造紫外线照射的动物学研究、以及基因存在问题,无法纠正紫外线DNA伤害的人患皮肤癌的几率,提供了证明联系存在的详尽证据。不久前的研究从分子和细胞的层次上证明:阳光和皮肤癌之间确实存在着因果关系。

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