Monday December 9, 2019

Exposure to UV Rays, Which Most Often Comes from Sun, Can Cause Skin Cancer in Athletes

Surprisingly, fewer than 25 per cent of surveyed athletes reported regular use of sunscreen, so there is clearly more awareness-raising

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UV Rays, Sun, Athletes
According to the researchers, limiting the sun exposure and applying sunscreen regularly can protect the skin from the harmful ultraviolet radiations of the sun and keep skin problems at bay. Pixabay

Exposure to the ultraviolet (UV) rays, which most often comes from the sun, can cause skin cancer in athletes, according to a new study. UV Rays

According to the researchers, limiting the sun exposure and applying sunscreen regularly can protect the skin from the harmful ultraviolet radiations of the sun and keep skin problems at bay.

“Sun protection in athletes is especially important as multiple studies demonstrate an elevated risk of skin cancer for those who regularly participate in outdoor sports or exercise,” said study researchers W. Larry Kenney from Penn State University.

“Surprisingly, fewer than 25 per cent of surveyed athletes reported regular use of sunscreen, so there is clearly more awareness-raising that needs to be done,” Kenney said.

UV Rays, Sun, Athletes
Exposure to the ultraviolet (UV) rays, which most often comes from the sun, can cause skin cancer in athletes, according to a new study. Pixabay

Athletes ranging from hikers, to tennis and runners exceed the recommended ultraviolet exposure limit by up to eight-fold during the summer and autumn months.

While regular physical activity is associated with a reduced risk of most cancers, skin cancer is an exception.

For malignant skin cancer, those in the 90th percentile for physical activity have an increased risk of cancer than those in the 10th percentile.

Sun protection in these groups is especially important as multiple studies demonstrate an elevated risk of skin cancer for those who regularly participate in outdoor sports or exercise.

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The ultraviolet radiation spectrum is categorised by wavelength as UV-A (320-400 nm), UV-B (290-320 nm) and UV-C (200-290 nm) and the biological effects vary per type.

UV-A constitutes around 95 per cent of ultraviolet radiation that reaches the earth’s surface, with the remainder being UV-B.

In the skin, UV-A is able to reach the skin’s blood circulation but most of UV-B is absorbed in the outer layers of the skin (called the epidermis and upper dermis) due to its shorter wavelengths.

UV Rays, Sun, Athletes
Sun protection in athletes is especially important as multiple studies demonstrate an elevated risk of skin cancer for those who regularly participate in outdoor sports or exercise. Pixabay

Skin pigmentation is another factor that affects our response to sun exposure.

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The study is scheduled to be presented at the Physiological Society’s Extreme Environmental Physiology meeting (02-04 September, 2019) in the UK. (IANS)

Next Story

Chinese Researchers Spot Monster Black Hole Bigger Than Sun

Chinese team spots monster black hole which is 70 times bigger than Sun

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Black Hole
A team of Chinese scientists spotted a black hole that is 70 times larger than the sun. (Representational Image Only). Wikimedia Commons

A team led by Chinese researchers has spotted a monster black hole with a mass 70 times greater than Sun — toppling the earlier assumption that the mass of an individual black hole in our Galaxy is no more than 20 times that of Sun.

Our Milky Way Galaxy is estimated to contain 100 million stellar black holes — cosmic bodies formed by the collapse of massive stars and so dense even light can’t escape.

The team, headed by Professor LIU Jifeng of the National Astronomical Observatory of China of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (NAOC), spotted a stellar black hole with a mass 70 times greater than the Sun.

The monster black hole is located 15 thousand light-years from Earth and has been named “LB-1” by the researchers in a paper reported in the journal Nature.

“Black holes of such mass should not even exist in our Galaxy, according to most of the current models of stellar evolution,” said LIU.

“We thought that very massive stars with the chemical composition typical of our Galaxy must shed most of their gas in powerful stellar winds, as they approach the end of their life. Therefore, they should not leave behind such a massive remnant,” he explained.

Spotting black hole
The monster black hole is located 15 thousand light-years from Earth. (Representational Image Only). Wikimedia Commons

Until just a few years ago, stellar black holes could only be discovered when they gobbled up gas from a companion star.

The vast majority of stellar black holes in our Galaxy are not engaged in a cosmic banquet, though, and thus don’t emit revealing X-rays.

As a result, only about two dozen Galactic stellar black holes have been well identified and measured.

To counter this limitation, LIU and collaborators surveyed the sky with China’s Large Sky Area Multi-Object Fiber Spectroscopic Telescope (LAMOST).

After the initial discovery, the world’s largest optical telescopes – Spain’s 10.4-m Gran Telescopio Canarias and the 10-m Keck I telescope in the US – were used to determine the system’s physical parameters.
The results were nothing short of fantastic: a star eight times heavier than the Sun was seen orbiting a 70-solar-mass black hole, every 79 days.

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The direct sighting of LB-1 proves that this population of over-massive stellar black holes exists even in our own backyard.

“This discovery forces us to re-examine our models of how stellar-mass black holes form,” said LIGO Director Professor David Reitze from University of Florida in the US. (IANS)