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Drinking alcohol during pregnancy could lead to acute myeloid leukemia in children

Date:
May 6, 2010
Source:
American Association for Cancer Research
Summary:
Despite public health warnings, drinking is still high among pregnant women. In a new study, acute myeloid leukemia risk increased 56 percent among children of those who drank alcohol.

Although acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is relatively rare in children, drinking alcohol during pregnancy could increase the risk, according to a recent paper published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

Julie Ross, Ph.D., director of the division of pediatric epidemiology and clinical research at the University of Minnesota, said there are about 700 cases of AML in the United States in children each year.

"It's quite rare, so we want to be careful about worrying parents too much," said Ross, who was not involved in the study, but is an editorial board member of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

Ross and the lead researcher of this study, Paule Latino-Martel, Ph.D., research director at the Research Center for Human Nutrition in France, agreed that these findings should strengthen the public health recommendation against alcohol consumption during pregnancy.

"Despite the current recommendation that pregnant women should not drink alcohol during pregnancy, alcohol consumption during pregnancy is 12 percent in the United States, 30 percent in Sweden, 52 percent in France, 59 percent in Australia and 60 percent in Russia," said Latino-Martel.

Latino-Martel and colleagues analyzed 21 case control studies. Alcohol intake during pregnancy, defined as a response to a yes or no question, was associated with a 56 percent increased risk of AML in children. The risk of AML was higher in children aged 0 to 4 years old at diagnosis. There was no significant association with acute lymphoblastic leukemia.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Association for Cancer Research. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Paule Latino-Martel, Doris S.m. Chan, Nathalie Druesne-Pecollo, Emilie Barrandon, Serge Hercberg, Teresa Norat. Maternal Alcohol Consumption during Pregnancy and Risk of Childhood Leukemia: Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, 2010; 19: 1238-1260 DOI: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-09-1110

Cite This Page:

American Association for Cancer Research. "Drinking alcohol during pregnancy could lead to acute myeloid leukemia in children." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 May 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100506083434.htm>.
American Association for Cancer Research. (2010, May 6). Drinking alcohol during pregnancy could lead to acute myeloid leukemia in children. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100506083434.htm
American Association for Cancer Research. "Drinking alcohol during pregnancy could lead to acute myeloid leukemia in children." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100506083434.htm (accessed April 20, 2014).

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