Smoking parents raise blood-cancer risk in children

Parents-to-be , here's another reason to kick the butt - smoking can raise your child's risk of developing leukaemia.

A team at Telethon Institute for Child Health Research has found that heavy smoking by parents around the time of conception increases the risk of the child developing Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL), the common form of childhood cancer.

"We look at prenatal exposures as it has to be something to do with what's happening before the baby's born.

There's a plausible biological pathway whereby paternal smoking could contribute to disease risk in the offspring," lead author Elizabeth Milne said. "The risk of ALL, when compared with dad's who did not smoke during the year of conception, increased by 35% when fathers smoked more than 15 cigarettes a day."

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