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Link found between marijuana use and testicular cancer

Published on 10/09/2012

Researchers have found a link between marijuana use and an increased risk of testicular cancer in young men.

A link has been found between marijuana use and an increased risk of testicular cancer

Scientists from the University of Southern California (USC) looked at the self-reported history of recreational drug use in 163 young men diagnosed with testicular cancer, compared with 292 healthy men of the same age and race or ethnicity.

They found that men with a history of using marijuana were twice as likely to develop subtypes of testicular cancer called non-seminoma and mixed germ cell tumours. These subtypes usually occur in younger men and carry a worse prognosis than the seminoma subtype.

Doctor Victoria Cortessis, assistant professor of preventive medicine at the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California, said:

"We do not know what marijuana triggers in the testis that may lead to carcinogenesis, although we speculate that it may be acting through the endocannabinoid system—the cellular network that responds to the active ingredient in marijuana—since this system has been shown to be important in the formation of sperm."

Writing online in the journal CANCER, the researchers also discovered that men with a history of cocaine use had a reduced risk of both subtypes of testicular cancer.

The study's findings confirm those from two previous reports on a potential link between cannabis use and testicular cancer.

© ActiveQuote Ltd. 2012

Categories:  Health
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