Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

The Risk of Death


In the New England Journal of Medicine this week, researchers in the US, Iceland, and Sweden reported a study on the rates of suicide and cardiovascular events that can sometimes follow a diagnosis of cancer. "Receiving a diagnosis of cancer is a traumatic experience that may trigger immediate adverse health consequences beyond the effects of the disease or treatment," the team writes. Using regression models, the researchers constructed a historical cohort of 6,073,240 Swedes who had received a diagnosis of cancer between 1991 and 2006. "As compared with cancer-free persons, the relative risk of suicide among patients receiving a cancer diagnosis was 12.6 during the first week and 3.1 during the first year," the researchers found. "The relative risk of cardiovascular death after diagnosis was 5.6 during the first week and 3.3 during the first four weeks." The risk of suicide and cardiovascular events decreased rapidly during the first year, after diagnosis, they add, but the risk for both was particularly high for cancers with a poor prognosis.

The Scan

Long COVID-19 Susceptibility Clues Contained in Blood Plasma Proteome

A longitudinal study in eBioMedicine found weeks-long blood plasma proteome shifts after SARS-CoV-2 infection, along with proteomic signatures that appeared to coincide with long Covid risk.

Tibetan Study Finds Adaptive Variant Influencing Skin Pigmentation

With a combination of phenotyping and genetic data, researchers document at PNAS a Tibetan-enriched enhancer variant influencing melanin synthesis and ultraviolet light response.

Domestication Linked to Nervous System Genes in Inbred Mouse Strains

Researchers highlighted more than 300 positively selected genes in domesticated mice, including genes linked to nervous system function or behavior in Genome Biology.

ALS Genetic Testing May Be Informative Across Age Ranges, Study Finds

Researchers in the journal Brain identified clinically actionable variants in a significant subset of older ALS patients, prompting them to point to the potential benefits of broader test use.