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World J Gastrointest Oncol. 2016 Apr 15;8(4):402-9. doi: 10.4251/wjgo.v8.i4.402.

Colorectal cancers and chlorinated water.

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Ahmed Mahmoud El-Tawil, Department of Surgery, University Hospital Birmingham, Birmingham B15 2GW, United Kingdom.


Published reports have revealed increased risk of colorectal cancers in people exposed to chlorinated drinking water or chemical derivatives of chlorination. Oestrogen plays a dual positive functions for diminishing the possibilities of such risk by reducing the entrance, and increasing the excretion, of these chemicals. In addition, there are supplementary measures that could be employed in order to reduce this risk further, such as boiling the drinking water, revising the standard concentrations of calcium, magnesium and iron in the public drinking water and prescribing oestrogen in susceptible individuals. Hypo-methylation of genomic DNA could be used as a biological marker for screening for the potential development of colorectal cancers.


Carcinogenesis; Chlorinated drinking water; Colorectal cancers; DNA hypo-methylation; Gender; Oestrogen; Sex hormones; Trihalomethanes

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