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Ideas for reporting on the connection between infectious diseases and cancer

By Bara Vaida and Mary Otto

Cancer is a set of diseases characterized by abnormal cell growth triggered by a genetic defect. Researchers know that genetic defects that cause cancer can be inherited, or the defects can be caused by environmental factors, such as smoking, and exposure to radiation. Infectious agents, such as viruses, bacteria and parasites, also can increase a person’s risk of developing cancer. 

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