N.J. breast cancer rate 7th highest in nation
#1 Sep 27, 2010
The headline of this article might lead one to believe that there is some environmental factor at play in the breast cancer rate in New Jersey, as New Jersey is only the eleventh most populous state in the country.
However, 5.5% of the population of New Jersey is of Jewish heritage. Unfortunately, Ashkenazi Jews are more likely than others to carry the BRCA genes, which greatly increase the risk that an individual will develop breast cancer.
I urge people to not jump to the conclusion that environmental factors have caused these statistics. It will take careful research to sort such an issue out. One way would be to eliminate people of Ashkenazi descent from any population studies to see what the rate of breast cancer is among people less likely to carry the BRCA genes.
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