A new analysis has indicated that higher body weight and taller stature during adolescence increase the risk of developing non-Hodgkin's lymphoma ( NHL ), a type of cancer of the lymphatic system.
The findings are published in Cancer, a journal of the American Cancer Society.
Rates of NHL have increased worldwide, and research suggests that rising rates of obesity may be contributing to this trend.
Researchers at Sheba Medical Center in Israel examined whether adolescent weight and height might be associated with the risk of developing NHL later in life.
The study included 2,352,988 teens aged 16 to 19 years old who were examined between 1967 and 2011.
Their information was linked to the Israel National Cancer Registry, which included 4021 cases of NHL from 1967 through 2012.
Adolescent overweight and obesity was associated with a 25% increased risk of NHL in later life, compared with normal weight, and there was an association for multiple subtypes of NHL.
There was also a stepwise gradient in NHL risk with increasing height.
When compared with the mid-range height category, shorter individuals had a 25% reduced risk of NHL, whereas the tallest individuals had a 28% increased risk.
In conclusion, excess height and weight were responsible for 6% and 3% of all NHL cases respectively.
As for mechanism, height and excess nutrition in childhood may have impacts on inflammatory molecules and growth factors that could support the development of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, but additional studies are needed to investigate these possibilities. ( Xagena )
Source: Cancer, 2016