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Lung cancer disparity

June 27, 2005|From Reuters

Black cigarette smokers with a parent or sibling who developed lung cancer at an early age are more likely to get the disease than white smokers with the same family history, researchers have found.

The reason for the disparity is not clear, but it could be that blacks are more susceptible to lung cancer or there may be some other risk factor, said the report from Detroit's Wayne State University.

The finding came from a study of more than 7,500 smokers who were lung cancer victims in the Detroit area between 1990 and 2003, one-third of whom were black.

Across the board there was "approximately a twofold increase in risk" for cigarette smokers getting lung cancer after age 60 if they were closely related to someone who got the disease before the age of 50, said Michele Cote, the study's lead author. But about 25% of blacks in that category developed lung cancer later, compared with 17% of similar whites.

The report was published in the June 22/29 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Assn.

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