The Cancer “Bad Luck” Hypothesis and Its Aftermath

Smoking is a leading cause of cancer


Forget smoking, sunburns, infections, and bad diet: two-thirds of cancers are due to “bad luck.”  That was the takeaway—and subsequent media headlines—from an article published in Science last year by researchers at Johns Hopkins Unversity.

Fast forward several months and another study looking at the same question came out in Nature with the opposite conclusion: lifestyle and other external factors account for over 70% of most cancers.

Two big name journals.  Two different conclusions.  So which is right?  What should be the new takeaway?

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2016: The Year of the Bean?

2016: the International Year of the Pulse (including bean)
Credit: Cookbookman17 // Flickr

When Gerd Bobe, a principal investigator with the Linus Pauling Institute, makes lentils he serves them with a dash of lemon vinegar and sugar.

“It’s the traditional German style,” he says, “and it makes this delicious sweet/tart flavor.” His favorite dish is lentil soup, with a bit of chopped Polish sausage, carrots, onions, and potatoes thrown in.

Continue reading 2016: The Year of the Bean?