In an article published by the oncology newspaper The ASCO Post, journalist Ronald Piana reports on the Halifax Project and the views of its initiators and collaborators. The Halifax Project investigates the carcinogenic potential of low-dose exposures to mixtures of “noncarcinogenic” chemicals (FPF reported).

174 scientists from 26 countries reviewed 85 chemicals not considered carcinogenic to humans for “actions on key pathways/mechanisms related to carcinogenesis,” outlined Leroy Lowe, president and cofounder of the non-profit organization Getting to Know Cancer, which initiated the Halifax Project. “A single chemical, which might not be carcinogenic on its own, could still enable a critical mechanism or pathway that is highly relevant in the multistep, multistage carcinogenic progression that leads to cancer,” Lowe further explained.

When you take cancer cells away from the chemicals we are exposed to every day, cancer cell growth rate decreases and cancer cell death from tamoxifen exposure increases, informed William H. Goodson III, senior scientist at California Pacific Medical Center Research Institute, San Francisco, U.S., and lead researcher on the Halifax Project. Therefore, “taking away chemicals should be investigated thoroughly,” Goodson stated.

“Each time we look into a new area of low-dose exposures, we’re seeing these gene interactions becoming more important in the formation of the initial cancer as well as its severity,” added Mark F. Miller, chief of staff at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), U.S.. “There’s a lot of work to be done, but we’re gaining support,” Miller asserted.

Read more

Ronald Piana (June 10, 2016). “Low-dose chemical exposure and cancer. The ASCO Post