Friday, February 5, 2010

Shiftwork As Probable Carcinogen

Did you know that in 2007, the World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer has listed “shiftwork that involves circadian disruption” as probable carcinogen?

In this age of information technology, the rapid growth in the call center industry has resulted to the increase in the numbers of nightshift workers, particularly in Asia. But nightshift workers are everywhere especially in the hospitals, police departments, wherever there is a need for 24/7 operations.

According to research, multiple studies have been conducted linking the increase of breast cancer with nightshift work. When the body's circadian rhythm is disrupted, melatonin production is suppressed. Melatonin is partly responsible in the sleep-wake cycle regulation. Reduced melatonin weakens the immune defence system of cells in fighting cancer development. Melatonin is also found to produce powerful antioxidant activity which helps our body resist cancer.

The link between carcinogen and circadian disruption was based on sufficient evidence from animal experiments, but limited evidence in humans.

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Written By Monch Bravante

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