For Immediate Release
How Did the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant Accident Impact Thyroid Cancer Risk?
Contact: Kathryn Ryan
New Rochelle, NY, December 21, 2017—New lessons are being learned about risk assessment and predicting the extent of thyroid cancer occurrence following radiation exposure due to a nuclear power plant accident such as the one in March 2011 in Fukushima Prefecture of Japan. The article entitled "Lessons from Fukushima: Latest Findings of Thyroid Cancer after the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant Accident" is part of a special section on Japanese Research led by Guest Editor Yoshiharu Murata, Nagoya University, Japan, in the January 2018 issue of Thyroid, a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers and the official journal of the American Thyroid Association (ATA). The article is available free on the Thyroid website.
Coauthors Shunichi Yamashita, Shinichi Suzuki, Satoru Suzuki, Hiroki Shimura, and Vladimir Saenko, from Fukushima Medical University and Nagasaki University, Japan discuss the implications of the results of two rounds of large-scale ultrasound screening, which detected a relatively high rate of thyroid cancer in young individuals from the Fukushima area. The researchers examine the challenges in distinguishing radiation-induced thyroid cancer from thyroid cancer that develops spontaneously and thus the difficulty in establishing a causal relationship. They explore in detail numerous topics, including studies of the link between radiation exposure, thyroid cancer, and related genetic alterations; the occurrence of thyroid cancer after the Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident, hereditary factors that may increase a person's susceptibility to radiation-induced thyroid cancer, and the findings from children, adolescents, and young adults in Fukushima with thyroid cancer treated with surgery.
“The careful study of the nuclear accidents in Chernobyl and Fukushima on health and societal issues continues to be highly informative. At this point, there is no clear evidence that the Fukushima accident has resulted in an increased incidence of thyroid carcinomas, a finding that contrasts with the observations after the Chernobyl accident," says Peter A. Kopp, MD, Editor-in-Chief of Thyroid and Professor of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism, and Molecular Medicine, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, IL. "The relatively high incidence of thyroid malignancies detected through the screening of the Fukushima population highlights the challenges associated with screening programs. However, any definite conclusion would be premature, and continuing observation of the Fukushima population, as well as detailed characterization of the genetic and pathological alterations in the detected thyroid carcinomas, remain important. Our Japanese colleagues are to be commended on the rigorous approach to this highly important public health problem."
About the Journal
Thyroid, the official journal of the American Thyroid Association, is an authoritative peer-reviewed journal published monthly online with open access options and in print. The Journal publishes original articles and timely reviews that reflect the rapidly advancing changes in our understanding of thyroid physiology and pathology, from the molecular biology of the cell to clinical management of thyroid disorders. Complete tables of content and a sample issue may be viewed on the Thyroid website. The complete Thyroid Journal Program includes the highly valued abstract and commentary publication Clinical Thyroidology, led by Editor-in-Chief Jerome M. Hershman, MD and published monthly, and the groundbreaking videojournal companion VideoEndocrinology, led by Editor Gerard Doherty, MD and published quarterly. Complete tables of content and sample issues may be viewed on the Thyroid website.
The American Thyroid Association (ATA) is the leading worldwide organization dedicated to the advancement, understanding, prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of thyroid disorders and thyroid cancer. ATA is an international membership medical society with over 1,700 members from 43 countries around the world. Celebrating its 94th anniversary, the ATA delivers its mission — of being devoted to thyroid biology and to the prevention and treatment of thyroid disease through excellence in research, clinical care, education, and public health — through several key endeavors: the publication of highly regarded professional journals, Thyroid, Clinical Thyroidology, and VideoEndocrinology; annual scientific meetings; research grant programs for young investigators, biennial clinical and research symposia; support of online professional, public and patient educational programs; and the development of guidelines for clinical management of thyroid disease and thyroid cancer. The ATA promotes thyroid awareness and information through its online Clinical Thyroidology for the Public (distributed free of charge to over 11,000 patients and public subscribers) and extensive, authoritative explanations of thyroid disease and thyroid cancer in both English and Spanish. The ATA website serves as the clinical resource for patients and the public who look for reliable information on the Internet.
Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers is a privately held, fully integrated media company known for establishing authoritative peer-reviewed journals in many promising areas of science and biomedical research, including Diabetes Technology & Therapeutics, Journal of Women’s Health, and Metabolic Syndrome and Related Disorders. Its biotechnology trade magazine, GEN (Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News), was the first in its field and is today the industry’s most widely read publication worldwide. A complete list of the firm’s more than 80 journals, books, and newsmagazines is available on the Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers website.