Hidden dangers of deodorants probed
Scientists have detected the chemical parabens, which is used in some deodorants, in breast cancer tumours.
The possibility of chemicals in antiperspirants being linked to cancer first emerged on the Internet some years ago and has since been the subject of several studies, most notably by Dr Philippa Darbre from Reading University.
Her latest study, published in the Journal of Applied Toxicology, looked at 20 human breast tumours, measuring the concentration of parabens in the tissue.
Parabens mimic the action of the female hormone oestrogen which can drive the growth of tumours, and were found to accumulate in human tissue during the study.
Britain has one of the highest rates of breast cancer in the world and the number of cases has more than doubled in 25 years.
More than 40,000 women are diagnosed each year with breast cancer, a one in nine chance of suffering from the disease.
A total of 13,000 women died from breast cancer in the UK in 2001.
There has been a continuing decline in the mortality figures over the past 10 years.
An overwhelming 80% of breast cancers occur in post-menopausal women.
More than 8,000 pre-menopausal women are diagnosed each year, of which just over 2,000 are in their 20s and 30s.
Only 5% - 10% of breast cancers are hereditary.
Nine out of 10 breast lumps are not a sign of breast cancer.
Just 1% of those diagnosed with breast cancer are men - about 250 a year.