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Cancer patients on rise in Shanghai; 32,000 die each year

SHANGHAI has 51,000 new cancer patients each year and 32,000 people die from cancer annually, said the Shanghai Health Bureau ahead of this year's Cancer Prevention Week which starts on Saturday.

The incidence of cancer is 374 in per 100,000 people, up from 350 two years ago. Cancer is the second deadliest disease for Shanghai residents, following cardiovascular disease.

The city has the highest incidence of cancer in the nation due to its large aging population, unhealthy habits like smoking and high-fat diet, and regular cancer patient registration.

According to the health bureau, the city's cancer incidence and death rates are at the world's mid-level, about two-thirds to three-fourths of the rates of developed countries.

Health experts underscored the prevention of colorectal cancer, which has climbed from the sixth most common cancer in the 1970s to the second most common cancer in Shanghai, following lung cancer.

The incidence of colorectal cancer jumped 3.67 times in the past 30 years. Experts attributed it to changing lifestyle, such as unhealthy diet, lack of exercise and widespread obesity problem.

To support cancer research, Merck Serono, a Geneva-based pharmaceutical company, offered grants to medical students of Shanghai Jiao Tong University yesterday. It is the first scholarship to support China's medical education and research. Twenty medical schools in 12 Chinese cities are covered by the scholarship.


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