Expert panel releases report on environmental links to breast cancer

While a yearlong study of potential environmental causes of breast cancer in women failed to pinpoint links with any chemicals, pesticides, or consumer products, that doesn’t mean these chemicals are safe, according to David Hunter, dean for academic affairs and professor of cancer prevention at Harvard School of Public Health, one of the study’s authors.

Hunter told Bloomberg News that more work is needed to move suspected dangerous chemicals to the “probable” list of cancer-causing agents.

Hunter and co-authors of the review—conducted by the nonprofit, independent Institute of Medicine—wrote that lifestyle factors, such as smoking, drinking, or weight gain, are the most-consistent known environmental risks for breast cancer.

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