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Research: Heavy Drinking Prime Cause of Acetaldehyde-Related Cancers

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The organic chemical acetaldehyde is known to cause certain types of cancer, and while acetaldehyde is widely present in the environment, the leading cause of acetaldehyde-related cancers is heavy drinking, according to a new study.

Researchers from the Center for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto and the Chemical and Veterinary Investigation Laboratory Karlsruhe in Germany found that drinking alcohol raised the risk of acetaldehyde-related cancers to 7.6 per 10,000 population, with heavy drinkers facing a 1 in 1,000 risk of developing cancer of the upper digestive tract or other related cancers.

The study appears in the April 2009 issue of the journal Addiction.

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