Doctor Investigates Childhood Leukemia Causes

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  • Thread starter jedishrfu
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https://medicalxpress.com/news/2018-05-uk-scientist-reveals-childhood-leukaemia.html

A major new analysis reveals for the first time the likely cause of most cases of childhood leukaemia, following more than a century of controversy about its origins.


Professor Mel Greaves from The Institute of Cancer Research, London, assessed the most comprehensive body of evidence ever collected on acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) - the most common type of childhood cancer.

His research concludes that the disease is caused through a two-step process of genetic mutation and exposure to infection that means it may be preventable with treatments to stimulate or 'prime' the immune system in infancy.

The first step involves a genetic mutation that occurs before birth in the foetus and predisposes children to leukaemia—but only 1 per cent of children born with this genetic change go on to develop the disease.

The second step is also crucial. The disease is triggered later, in childhood, by exposure to one or more common infections, but primarily in children who experienced 'clean' childhoods in the first year of life, without much interaction with other infants or older children.
 

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  • #2
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The second step sounds like parents share some blame? I wonder how that will be received. Too much sanitation and sterilization? Let kids be dirty?
 
  • #3
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The second step sounds like parents share some blame? I wonder how that will be received. Too much sanitation and sterilization? Let kids be dirty?
This is a very difficult road for parents. Letting them be dirty may lead to a host of other illnesses like necrotizing fascitis or lime disease...

Its tough to be a parent.
 
  • #4
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Let kids be dirty?
Given the actual trends of our civilization instead of that simple method I would rather expect to appear some special 'dirt pills' and 'temperance soaps' :nb)
 
  • #5
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Given the actual trends of our civilization instead of that simple method I would rather expect to appear some special 'dirt pills' and 'temperance soaps' :nb)
Or a microbiome pill, to change your gut for the better with good bacteria.
 
  • #6
jim mcnamara
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Asthma in early childhood is related to lack of exposure to foreign antigens in very young children, i.e. being in very close proximity animals: livestock, mammalian pets, etc.

Hygiene hypothesis: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3411171/ discusses mouse model of Hygiene hypothesis. You may see this concept called the 'bored immune system' response in popular science articles.
 
  • #7
jim mcnamara
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  • #8
Fervent Freyja
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I recall learning about the hygiene hypothesis after my daughter was born.

I observed and timed her exposure closely in infancy and the early years. Go play in the grass and dirt!

Breastfeeding is incredibly useful for guiding the exposure for a healthy immune system. I wonder if these childen in the study were breastfed?

I have memories of being delighted to expose her to the "unsanitary" after she was old enough.

I should shut up though. She was just diagnosed with allergies this week, so I didn't do all that great! Zyrtec every day now!
 
  • #9
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I think we all get allergies especially if we move to a new area later in life.

I've heard that local honey can acclimate your body to new environs however the problem seems to be that you don't know where the honey actually comes from or if its a blend of kinds of honey. We got some Manuka honey in New Zeland and its claim is that it's a natural antibiotic.

https://www.webmd.com/allergies/features/does-honey-help-prevent-allergies

https://www.healthline.com/health/allergies/honey-remedy#research

and on Manuka honey research:

https://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/manuka-honey-medicinal-uses#1
 
  • #10
PhanthomJay
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And to think for 40 years I thought it was caused by magnetic fields (rays of death) from power lines.
 

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