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Author Pauley, S.M.
Title Lighting for the human circadian clock: recent research indicates that lighting has become a public health issue Type Journal Article
Year 2004 Publication Medical Hypotheses Abbreviated Journal Med Hypotheses
Volume 63 Issue 4 Pages 588-596
Keywords Human Health; Chronobiology Disorders/*complications/*physiopathology; Circadian Rhythm/*radiation effects; Clinical Trials as Topic; Environmental Exposure/adverse effects; Evidence-Based Medicine; Humans; Light; Lighting/*adverse effects/methods; Melatonin/metabolism; *Models, Biological; Neoplasms/*etiology/*physiopathology; Occupational Diseases/etiology/physiopathology; Public Health/methods/trends; Risk Assessment/methods; Risk Factors
Abstract The hypothesis that the suppression of melatonin (MLT) by exposure to light at night (LAN) may be one reason for the higher rates of breast and colorectal cancers in the developed world deserves more attention. The literature supports raising this subject for awareness as a growing public health issue. Evidence now exists that indirectly links exposures to LAN to human breast and colorectal cancers in shift workers. The hypothesis begs an even larger question: has medical science overlooked the suppression of MLT by LAN as a contributor to the overall incidence of cancer? The indirect linkage of breast cancer to LAN is further supported by laboratory rat experiments by David E. Blask and colleagues. Experiments involved the implanting of human MCF-7 breast cancer cell xenografts into the groins of rats and measurements were made of cancer cell growth rates, the uptake of linoleic acid (LA), and MLT levels. One group of implanted rats were placed in light-dark (12L:12D) and a second group in light-light (12L:12L) environments. Constant light suppressed MLT, increased cancer cell growth rates, and increased LA uptake into cancer cells. The opposite was seen in the light-dark group. The proposed mechanism is the suppression of nocturnal MLT by exposure to LAN and subsequent lack of protection by MLT on cancer cell receptor sites which allows the uptake of LA which in turn enhances the growth of cancer cells. MLT is a protective, oncostatic hormone and strong antioxidant having evolved in all plants and animals over the millennia. In vertebrates, MLT is normally produced by the pineal gland during the early morning hours of darkness, even in nocturnal animals, and is suppressed by exposure to LAN. Daily entrainment of the human circadian clock is important for good human health. These studies suggest that the proper use and color of indoor and outdoor lighting is important to the health of both humans and ecosystems. Lighting fixtures should be designed to minimize interference with normal circadian rhythms in plants and animals. New discoveries on blue-light-sensitive retinal ganglion cell light receptors that control the circadian clock and how those receptors relate to today's modern high intensity discharge (HID) lamps are discussed. There is a brief discussion of circadian rhythms and light pollution. With the precautionary principle in mind, practical suggestions are offered for better indoor and outdoor lighting practices designed to safeguard human health.
Address spauley@cox-internet.com
Corporate Author Thesis
Publisher Place of Publication Editor
Language English Summary Language Original Title
Series Editor Series Title Abbreviated Series Title
Series Volume Series Issue Edition
ISSN 0306-9877 ISBN Medium
Area Expedition Conference
Notes PMID:15325001 Approved no
Call Number LoNNe @ kagoburian @ Serial 792
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Author Srinivasan, V.; Spence, D.W.; Pandi-Perumal, S.R.; Trakht, I.; Esquifino, A.I.; Cardinali, D.P.; Maestroni, G.J.
Title Melatonin, environmental light, and breast cancer Type Journal Article
Year 2008 Publication Breast Cancer Research and Treatment Abbreviated Journal Breast Cancer Res Treat
Volume 108 Issue 3 Pages 339-350
Keywords Human Health; Breast Neoplasms/*etiology/*physiopathology; Circadian Rhythm/physiology; Female; Humans; Light; Lighting/*adverse effects; Melatonin/*physiology; Occupational Exposure/adverse effects
Abstract Although many factors have been suggested as causes for breast cancer, the increased incidence of the disease seen in women working in night shifts led to the hypothesis that the suppression of melatonin by light or melatonin deficiency plays a major role in cancer development. Studies on the 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene and N-methyl-N-nitrosourea experimental models of human breast cancer indicate that melatonin is effective in reducing cancer development. In vitro studies in MCF-7 human breast cancer cell line have shown that melatonin exerts its anticarcinogenic actions through a variety of mechanisms, and that it is most effective in estrogen receptor (ER) alpha-positive breast cancer cells. Melatonin suppresses ER gene, modulates several estrogen dependent regulatory proteins and pro-oncogenes, inhibits cell proliferation, and impairs the metastatic capacity of MCF-7 human breast cancer cells. The anticarcinogenic action on MCF-7 cells has been demonstrated at the physiological concentrations of melatonin attained at night, suggesting thereby that melatonin acts like an endogenous antiestrogen. Melatonin also decreases the formation of estrogens from androgens via aromatase inhibition. Circulating melatonin levels are abnormally low in ER-positive breast cancer patients thereby supporting the melatonin hypothesis for breast cancer in shift working women. It has been postulated that enhanced endogenous melatonin secretion is responsible for the beneficial effects of meditation as a form of psychosocial intervention that helps breast cancer patients.
Address Department of Physiology, School of Medical Sciences, University Sains Malaysia, Kubang Kerian, Kelantan, Malaysia
Corporate Author Thesis
Publisher Place of Publication Editor
Language English Summary Language Original Title
Series Editor Series Title Abbreviated Series Title
Series Volume Series Issue Edition
ISSN 0167-6806 ISBN Medium
Area Expedition Conference
Notes PMID:17541739 Approved no
Call Number LoNNe @ kagoburian @ Serial 815
Permanent link to this record