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non-communicable diseases

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In a paper appearing in this week’s issue of the journal Science, Canadian microbiologist Brett Finlay and colleagues point to growing data suggesting that cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, irritable bowel syndrome and other diseases long considered not transmissible from one person to another might actually spread like stomach bugs.

“It really leads to a rather almost heretical postulate — that non-communicable diseases, which basically means non-infectious diseases, might actually be communicable,” said Finlay, a renowned microbiome researcher at the University of British Columbia.

“And, given that 70 per cent of the people in the world die of what we call non-communicable diseases, it gives you a whole different way of looking at these things.”

While still a hypothesis — and much more research is needed — where there’s smoke, there’s fire, Finlay said. “And there’s an awful lot of smoke.”


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