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Number of moles could predict breast cancer risk

BMJ 2014; 348 doi: (Published 11 June 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;348:g3739
  1. Jacqui Wise
  1. 1London

The number of cutaneous nevi (moles) women have could be a marker for breast cancer risk, a large prospective cohort study has found.1 The research, reported in the journal PLoS Medicine, found a significant positive association between the number of cutaneous nevi and the incidence of invasive breast cancer, independent of other known risk factors for breast cancer.

Nearly 75 000 participants in the Nurses’ Health Study reported how many nevi larger than 3 mm they had on their left arm at an initial assessment in 1986. Over the next 24 years 5483 invasive breast cancers were diagnosed in the cohort. Among women with …

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