Cigarette smoking and obesity may account for approximately 40% of cases in high-incidence countries. Continued research in kidney cancer is needed since nearly 50% of the patients die within five years after diagnosis. With the aim of prevention, the continued search for environmental causes should take into account the fact that kidney cancer consists of different types with specific genetic molecular characteristics. In some cases, these genetic alterations have been purportedly associated with specific exposures. Furthermore, genetic polymorphisms may have a modulating effect on metabolic activation and detoxification enzymes. Thus, better understanding of the genetic and molecular processes involved in kidney cancer may help with the analyzing exposure associations that are important in both its initiation and progression.
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