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Dr. Alice Berger Receives Grant to Study Causes of Lung Cancer in Never-Smokers

By January 31, 2019No Comments

As smoking has decreased over the past few decades, so too has the lung cancer rate. But within these data lies a conundrum: As overall rates of lung cancer lessen, the rate among those who have never smoked appears to be rising. In 2016, nearly a quarter of women with lung cancer had smoked fewer than 100 cigarettes over their lifetimes (the upper limit for a “never-smoker”), and more than 15 percent of men with lung cancer also fell into this category. These patients usually develop non-small cell lung cancer, a deadly type of lung tumor. More work needs to be done to understand how to prevent lung cancer in people classified as never-smokers.

Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center lung cancer researcher Dr. Alice Berger recently received a grant from Prevent Cancer Foundation to help untangle how environmental exposures beyond cigarette smoke contribute to lung cancer.