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By
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 12/13/2007

Night shift might cause cancer: WHO

Geneva

— Based on research that has found higher rates of breast and prostate cancer in night-shift workers, the World Health Organization is adding overnight shift work to its list of probable carcinogens. Scientists suspect this work is dangerous because it disrupts the production of the hormone melatonin, which can suppress tumour development and is usually produced at night. Light shuts down melatonin production, so people working in artificial light at night may have lower melatonin levels.