Intuitively I know that pollution causes cancer. Empirical research is starting to support this view.
An analysis of medical records from 1,200 children who developed an aggressively malignant brain tumor called medulloblastoma has shown they are more likely to have been born in the late summer and early fall. The finding has prompted researchers to speculate that prenatal environmental exposures to chemicals could contribute to this cancer, whose causes remains largely unknown. They said their findings emphasize the need for additional studies into the environmental origins of medulloblastoma.
The researchers from Duke University Medical Center and the Nicholas School of the Environment and Earth Sciences at Duke said that seasonal variations in the use of pesticides, fungicides, other water pollutants and antihistamines could expose fetuses to these compounds during critical periods of brain development.
"Children born in the fall would have been conceived the previous winter, and major fetal development would occur during the spring," said Edward Halperin, M.D., vice dean of the school of medicine and a radiation oncologist at Duke. "Environmental events that occur during the spring more often than other times of the year might explain the differences."