Enlarge / An adult Clonorchis sinensis (credit: PLoS Medicine)
A small pilot study hints that a startling number of Vietnam veterans may be infected with a liver parasite that can induce a rare type of cancer, the Associated Press reports.
The study, conducted by the Northport VA Medical Center in New York, involved blood samples from 50 Vietnam veterans.

Testing performed at Seoul National University in South Korea found that more than 20 percent of those samples were positive or borderline positive for antibodies against the parasite, a liver fluke.
The results are preliminary and require follow-up research.
It’s also unclear how the 50 blood samples were chosen.

That said, the results hint that many veterans may have the cancer-inducing infection and not yet know.

The study follows a report last year by the AP, which raised questions about the the rate of that otherwise rare type of cancer in veterans.
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