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Heavy drinking may 'increase skin cancer risk by more than half'

London, January 29 : A new study has revealed that heavy drinking can increase the risk of developing the deadliest form of skin cancer by more than half.

Researchers have found that downing three or four drinks a day causes biological changes which make the body more sensitive to sun, Metro.co.uk reported.

The study has revealed that even as little as one drink a day can raise the chance of getting melanoma by 20 per cent, while for heavy drinkers the risk increases by 55 per cent.

Researcher Dr Eva Negri said that the mix of UV rays and alcohol damages the body's immune responses, which can lead to far greater cellular damage and subsequently cause skin cancers to form.

The researchers admit they do not know exactly how drinking increases the cancer risk, but have found that alcohol is turns acetaldehyde soon after it is consumed and makes the skin more sensitive to sunlight.

The study, which is based on a review of 16 other studies and 6,251 cases of melanoma, has been published in the British Journal of Dermatology.

--ANI (Posted on 29-01-2014)

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