Height and Weight Can Influence Lymphoma Risk in Teens

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A new study published in CANCER reveals that height and body weight during adolescence can impact the risk of developing non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL).

Specifically, a higher body weight and taller stature increase the odds of developing NHL - which is one of the most common forms of cancer found in children.

"It is important to be aware that overweight and obesity are not risk factors only for diabetes and cardiovascular disease but also for lymphomas," said Dr. Merav Leiba, from the Sheba Medical Center in Israel.

Excess nutrition may impact growth factors

The study suggests that higher obesity rates could contribute to the growing presence of NHL, but this does not explain why height is associated with risk for the disease.

Researchers looked at data on over 2 million teens between the ages of 16 and 19, finding there was a gradient in NHL risk with increasing height. Shorter teens had a 25 percent lower risk of NHL, while the tallest study participants had a 28 percent increased risk.

"As for mechanism, height and excess nutrition in childhood may have impacts on inflammatory molecules and growth factors that could support the development of NHL, but additional studies are needed to investigate these possibilities," a news release on the study stated.

Source: WILEY

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