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Cancer Detect Prev. 1990;14(5):547-53.

Cancer incidence in young offspring of Jewish immigrants to Israel. A methodological study. I. Nasopharyngeal malignancies and Ewing sarcoma.

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  • 1Israel Cancer Registry, Ministry of Health, Jerusalem.


Differences in cancer incidence among various immigrant groups in Israel raised the question of persistence in their descendants. The methodological problems of identification of both parents and their origins, the choice of the denominator, and the long period of observation necessary for the rare childhood tumors have been examined. From 22-years data of the Israel Cancer Registry (ICR), three malignancies were chosen as examples: epithelial carcinoma of nasopharynx (31 cases), non-Hodgkin's lymphoma of nasopharynx (14 cases), and Ewing sarcoma (55 cases). The actual number of cases, in spite of the long period of incidence, is small and the computed significance must be accepted with reservation. There are two outstanding findings: the higher incidence in males as well as in females for nasopharynx carcinoma corresponds to that of their African-born parents; an increasing trend in the second 11-years period for Ewing sarcoma. Similar studies on leukemias, lymphomas, and others with a greater number of cases can be expected to have more reliable results. This survey relied on the majority of patients with immigrant parents, mostly of the same origin. In the following years, second and later generations of Israel-born and an increasing part of intermarriages will severely impede similar studies.

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