Cancer & Environment: Searching for Answers

This week, the Environment Report is taking an in-depth look at the connections between cancer and the environment.

When somebody gets cancer, one of the first questions is usually "why?"

Does this kind of cancer run in my family?

Was it something in the water, or in the air around me?

Did I get exposed to something?

What would you do, or where would you go to answer these questions?

We'll explore how much we really know about the connections between cancer and the chemicals in our environment.

We'll also meet both regular people and scientists trying to figure out if certain towns around Michigan are struggling with more cancer cases than other places because of current or past pollution.

You'll hear about whether or not turning to the courts makes sense when it seems a company might to be blame for putting people at risk of cancer or other illnesses.

Finally, we'll look at where we go from here. What do researchers know, and where are they looking next?


Cancer & Environment
9:00 am
Mon March 5, 2012

Our murky understanding of cancer and chemicals (Part 1)

Corinna Borden was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma six years ago. She wrote a book about her experience - "I Dreamt of Sausage."
courtesy of Corinna Borden

According to the latest numbers from the National Cancer Institute, roughly 41 percent of us will be diagnosed with some type of cancer in our lifetimes.

But “cancer” is not just one type of disease.

There are more than 100 different kinds with different personalities and causes. And the causes are not all that well understood.

This week, we’re taking a closer look at cancer and environmental pollutants.

It’s a subject researchers are trying to learn more about, but the picture of how the chemicals in our everyday lives interact with our bodies’ cells is far from clear.

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