Jun 1 2012

Public Health News Roundup: June 1

Cancer Rates Predicted to Soar Worldwide by 2030

Cancer cases are expected to increase 75 percent throughout the world by 2030, according to a new study published in Lancet Oncology. In the poorest nations, cancer cases could increase by 90 percent.

The study, which used 2008 data on 184 countries from the International Agency for Research on Cancer, finds that while cases of cervical and stomach cancer may be declining, other types of cancer including colorectal, breast and prostate cancer are increasing, likely because of lifestyle changes including higher fat diets and less exercise.

The researchers also say current smoking rates in poorer countries could mean higher lung cancer rates in the future. Read more on global health.

USDA To Test for Six Additional E. coli Strains in Beef

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) will begin a zero-tolerance policy for six additional strains of E. coli in raw beef starting Monday June 4. FSIS will routinely test raw beef for the six additional strains. If contamination is found the beef cannot be sold, and distributed meat will be recalled.

The additional strains can cause severe illness and even death especially in young children, older adults and people who immune system is weakened. Read more on food safety.

Smoking in Pregnancy Can Impact Children in Teen Years

Black and Latino children whose mothers smoked during pregnancy are more likely to suffer from acute asthma symptoms in their teens than asthma sufferers whose mothers did not smoke, according to a new study by researchers at the University of California at San Francisco. The study was published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.

The study looked at data on 2,500 Latino and Black children with asthma between the ages of 8 and 17 and found that if mothers smoked while pregnant, their children had about a 50 percent increase in uncontrolled asthma, even when other factors such as income and exposure to secondhand smoke were taken into account. "Kids who are 17 years old still show the effects of something they were exposed to during the first nine months of life," says Sam S. Oh, PhD, MPH, a postdoctoral scholar in epidemiology at the UCSF Center for Tobacco Research and Education, who is the lead author on the study. Read more asthma news.

Tags: Asthma, Cancer, Food Safety, Global Health, News roundups, Tobacco