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BP building gone, but its medical mystery remains

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posted on Jun, 4 2010 @ 03:40 AM
June 02, 2010|By Gerry Smith, Tribune reporter

"The former setting of a medical mystery is now a pile of rubble. But for Gayle Palmer, the final chapter has yet to be written.

In recent weeks, BP demolished Building 503 of its Naperville research campus where at least six former chemical researchers of what was then Amoco Corp. — including Palmer's husband, David — developed a deadly form of brain cancer in the 1980s and 1990s.

Researchers who conducted a three-year study of the cancer cluster concluded those six cases of glioma probably were workplace-related. Yet the scientists never could identify the source of the workers' ailments."

This article sort of jumped out at me as my father, who was 58, died of a brain tumor of this sort in November 2007. It was a GBM (glioblastoma multiforme), which is also the same type of tumor Ted Kennedy died from. My father, of course, didn't work in this building (or for BP, for that matter); he worked in a hospital his whole life. I was really hoping that having so many cases from the same floor of a building would lead them to some idea as to what causes these tumors. Unfortunately, it sounds like nothing came of it--at least that they're going to tell us about.

As of now, no experts in the field seem to have any idea at all what causes these types of tumors (GBMs), and they are becoming more and more common. The vast majority of them occur in men between late 40s and early 60s. My father was not a cell phone user, nor did he work in radiology.

Anyway, here's the link: cer-cluster

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