A mesothelioma epidemic in Cappadocia: scientific developments and unexpected social outcomes

Nature Reviews Cancer. 7, 147-154 (February 2007). [Link]

Carbone M, Emri S, Dogan AU, Steele I, Tuncer M, Pass HI, Baris YI.

Cancer Research Center of Hawaii, Thoracic Oncology Program, Honolulu, Hawaii 96816, USA. mcarbone@crch.hawaii.edu


In Cappadocia, Turkey, an unprecedented mesothelioma epidemic causes 50% of all deaths in three small villages. Initially linked solely to the exposure to a fibrous mineral, erionite, recent studies by scientists from Turkey and the United States have shown that erionite causes mesothelioma mostly in families that are genetically predisposed to mineral fibre carcinogenesis. This manuscript reports, through the eyes of one of the researchers, the resulting scientific advances that have come from these studies and the social improvements that were brought about by both the scientists and members of the Turkish Government.