Most cancers due to extrinsic factors, research suggests

The Los Angeles Times (12/17, Healy) reports that research published in Nature suggests that “environmental exposures, lifestyle choices and other factors that could be changed or avoided account for between 70% and 90% of the gene mutations that make cancerous tumors progress.”

STAT (12/17, Begley) reports that the researchers found that “unavoidable intrinsic risk factors [such as cell division] contribute only modestly, less than 10-30 percent, to the development of many common cancers.”

The San Diego Union-Tribune (12/17, Fikes) reports that this research “disputes research published” earlier this year in Science “that attributed most cancers to ‘bad luck,’ or in more scientific terms, random mutations that by chance lead to cancer.”