Keeping Babies Too Clean Will Trigger Leukemia, Scientists Warn


Keeping your baby “too clean” might trigger a type of leukemia, according to a bombshell new research study.

Youngsters who are genetically in danger of establishing severe lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) are significantly more most likely to have the illness if they are not exposed to germs, a study found today.

Scientist analysed a variety of studies consisting of one where mice who were genetically inclined to ALL and resided in germ-free environments all established the condition when exposed to common bacteria and infections.

Previous research also suggests toddlers who go to nurseries are 30 percent less most likely to develop ALL due to them selecting up infections from other kids that enhance their body immune systems.


Lead author Professor Mel Greaves, from The Institute of Cancer Research, London, stated:

“The research strongly suggests ALL has a clear biological cause and is triggered by a variety of infections in predisposed children whose immune systems have not been properly primed.

“The most important implication is most cases of childhood leukemia are likely to be preventable.”

ALL affects around 60,000 new people a year in the US and is the most common type of leukemia in children.

Triggering leukemia in infants

“This research is a culmination of decades of work”

Professor Greaves said in a statement about the findings::

“I have spent more than 40 years researching childhood leukemia, and over that time there has been huge progress in our understanding of its biology and its treatment – so that today around 90 percent of cases are cured.

“But it has always struck me that something big was missing, a gap in our knowledge – why or how otherwise healthy children develop leukemia and whether this cancer is preventable.

“This body of research is a culmination of decades of work, and at last provides a credible explanation for how the major type of childhood leukemia develops.”

Results even more recommend one in 20 children are born with a genetic anomaly that could cause ALL.

However, less than one percent end up being ill, which may be because of ecological elements playing a critical function in disease beginning.

Leukemia rates in children are especially typical in affluent societies, which may be because of such individuals being more mindful of health.

The findings were published in the journal Nature Reviews Cancer.

“Childhood leukemia might become a preventable disease”

Professor Paul Workman, president of The Institute of Cancer Research, stated:

“This research has been something of a personal, 30-year quest for Professor Mel Greaves – who is one of the UK’s most influential and iconic cancer researchers.

“His work has cut through the myths about childhood leukemia and for the first time set out a single unified theory for how most cases are caused.”

Such misconceptions include ALL being connected to radiation or pollution.

Professor Workman added: “It’s exciting to believe that, in future, childhood leukaemia might become a preventable disease as a result of this work.

“Preventing childhood leukemia would have a huge impact on the lives of children and their families in the UK and across the globe.”

The scientists hope their findings will help to reduce ALL rates, particularly among children.

They think exposing infants to harmless ‘bugs’ may reinforce their immune systems and lower their threat of health problem.

Previous research study likewise links a lack of exposure to germs in early childhood to the onset of conditions such as arthritis and eczema.

Warning to parents

Mentioning the findings, Dr. Alasdair Rankin, director of research at the blood cancer charity Bloodwise, who assisted with funding the study, stated:

“We urge parents not to be alarmed by this study – childhood leukemia is very rare and only around one in 2,000 children will develop it. 

“While developing a strong immune system early in life may slightly further reduce risk, there is nothing that can be currently done to definitively prevent childhood leukemia. 

“As noted by this study, other factors influence its development – including pure chance.”


Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is a type of blood cancer that begins with young leukocyte in the bone marrow.

There are around 60,000 brand-new cases in the US every year.

In the US, ALL impacts roughly 1.7 adults for every 100,000.

Anybody can develop ALL, however, it generally impacts younger individuals.

Lots of ALL symptoms are unclear and flu-like, such as:

  • General weak point
  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Frequent infections
  • Bruising or bleeding quickly, consisting of nosebleeds, heavy durations and blood in the urine or faeces
  • Unusual weight loss
  • Bone or joint discomfort
  • Breathlessness
  • Inflamed lymph nodes
  • Feeling complete
  • Paler skin than typical

Dangers of establishing ALL include exposure to radiation, smoking cigarettes, being overweight and having a weak body immune system.

Research recommends being breastfed and exposed to childhood infections might lower an individual’s risk.

The main ALL treatment is chemotherapy.

Patients may also undergo radiotherapy, steroids treatment, or bone marrow transplants.



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