Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Alcohol-induced Flushing Is Risk Factor For Esophageal Cancer From Alcohol Consumption

Date:
March 26, 2009
Source:
Public Library of Science
Summary:
There is growing evidence that people who experience facial flushing after drinking alcohol are at much higher risk of esophageal cancer from alcohol consumption than those who do not.

There is growing evidence that people who experience facial flushing after drinking alcohol are at much higher risk of esophageal cancer from alcohol consumption than those who do not.

About a third of East Asians (Japanese, Chinese, and Koreans) show a characteristic physiological response to drinking alcohol that includes facial flushing, nausea, and an increased heart rate. This so-called "alcohol flushing response" is predominantly due to an inherited deficiency in an enzyme called aldehyde dehydrogenase 2 (ALDH2). Although clinicians and the East Asian public generally know about the alcohol flushing response, few are aware of the accumulating evidence that ALDH2-deficient individuals are at much higher risk of esophageal cancer (specifically squamous cell carcinoma) from alcohol consumption than individuals with fully active ALDH2.

Dr Philip Brooks and colleagues from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, National Institutes of Health, Maryland, USA, along with Dr. Akira Yokoyama from the Kurihama Alcohol Center in Japan, say that this lack of awareness is "unfortunate as esophageal cancer is one of the deadliest cancers worldwide, with five-year survival rates of 15.6% in the United States, 12.3% in Europe, and 31.6% in Japan."

"Our goal in writing this article," say the researchers, "is to inform doctors firstly that their ALDH2- deficient patients have an increased risk for esophageal cancer if they drink moderate amounts of alcohol, and secondly that the alcohol flushing response is a biomarker for ALDH2 deficiency."

Clinicians, they say, can determine ALDH2 deficiency simply by asking about previous episodes of alcohol-induced flushing.

"As a result," say Dr Brooks and colleagues, "ALDH2-deficient patients can then be counseled to reduce alcohol consumption, and high-risk patients can be assessed for endoscopic cancer screening."

In view of the approximately 540 million ALDH2-deficient individuals in the world, many of whom now live in Western societies, even a small percent reduction in esophageal cancers due to a reduction in alcohol drinking would translate into a substantial number of lives saved.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Public Library of Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Brooks et al. The Alcohol Flushing Response: An Unrecognized Risk Factor for Esophageal Cancer from Alcohol Consumption. PLoS Medicine, 2009; 6 (3): e50 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.1000050

Cite This Page:

Public Library of Science. "Alcohol-induced Flushing Is Risk Factor For Esophageal Cancer From Alcohol Consumption." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 March 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090323092711.htm>.
Public Library of Science. (2009, March 26). Alcohol-induced Flushing Is Risk Factor For Esophageal Cancer From Alcohol Consumption. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090323092711.htm
Public Library of Science. "Alcohol-induced Flushing Is Risk Factor For Esophageal Cancer From Alcohol Consumption." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090323092711.htm (accessed September 19, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, September 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Cost of Ebola

The Cost of Ebola

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 18, 2014) As Sierra Leone prepares for a three-day "lockdown" in its latest bid to stem the spread of Ebola, Ciara Lee looks at the financial implications of fighting the largest ever outbreak of the disease. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
What HealthKit Bug Means For Your iOS Fitness Apps

What HealthKit Bug Means For Your iOS Fitness Apps

Newsy (Sep. 18, 2014) Apple has delayed the launch of the HealthKit app platform, citing a bug. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.S. Food Makers Surpass Calorie-Cutting Pledge

U.S. Food Makers Surpass Calorie-Cutting Pledge

Newsy (Sep. 18, 2014) Sixteen large food and beverage companies in the United States that committed to cut calories in their products far surpassed their target. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Residents Vaccinated as Haiti Fights Cholera Epidemic

Residents Vaccinated as Haiti Fights Cholera Epidemic

AFP (Sep. 18, 2014) Haitians receive the second dose of the vaccine against cholera as part of the UN's vaccination campaign. Duration: 00:34 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins