Tuesday 27 April 2010

Mail cancer scare is 'fabrication' shock

Two weeks ago, the Daily Mail added a ludicrous new item to its list of things that give you cancer: turning a light on when you go to the toilet at night.

Yes, really:

This stupid, incorrect article began:

Simply turning on a light at night for a few seconds to go to the toilet can cause changes that might lead to cancer, scientists claim.

The University of Leicester, which was involved in the original reseach, dismissed the Mail's spin:

There is no connection between illuminated, nocturnal calls of nature and cancer, despite what certain newspapers are claiming...

Professor Kyriacou and Dr Ben-Shlomo suggest in their conclusion, that the chronic exposure of shift workers to extended light schedules during what should be their ‘night’, may also misregulate these cell cycle genes, and could conceivably contribute to the elevated levels of tumours seen in this population.

But nowhere in their paper, which is published in the journal Cancer Genetics and Cytogenetics, do they mention trips to the toilet or anything even vaguely similar.

In addition, Professor Kyriacou told AOL Health:

'The 'switching on of lights causes cancer when you go to the bathroom at night' is an eye-catching fabrication of the press.'

What a surprise. But you didn't really need to be a professor to think that might be the case.

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