US authorities launched an investigation after it emerged that more than 100 people enrolled in a New Jersey high school had a "rare" type of brain cancer years after graduating or working there, according to the Daily Mail.
It was revealed by a former student at Cologne High School in Woodbridge, New Jersey after the Lopiano, now 50, suffered from a brain tumor about 20 years ago.
He didn't think about it at first until his wife was diagnosed with the same type of glioblastoma, followed by his sister, who also had an aggressive tumor and eventually died last month.
According to the American Society of Neurological Surgeons, glioblastoma is very rare, with 3.21 per 100,000 people. But since others were asked to connect, 102 people who passed through the school between 1975 and 2000 developed a type of brain cancer.
Lupiano, an ecologist, decided to post the story on Facebook, convinced that there was something linking his sister's sudden death to his experiences and his wife's. For messages and replies flowed through his private mail.
The vast majority of those who developed brain tumors graduated between 1975 and 2000, although there was only one case in 2014.
"What I find worrying is that there is really only one environmental link to primary brain tumors, and that is ionizing radiation," Lupiano said. It has nothing to do with polluted water or air. It's nothing in the soil... It didn't happen to us because of bad habits.”
The man tried to find out what was found on the site of the school before it was built.
"It was unused land and it was a woodland," Woodbridge Mayor John McCormick told CBS. High school is the first thing that was there, so there was probably nothing on Earth at the time.”
The state Department of Health, the Environmental Protection Administration, and the Federal Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry are investigating the cases.
The diagnoses made by more than 100 people who contacted Lopiano include "several types of primary brain tumors, including precancerous forms such as glioblastoma and noncancerous but debilitating masses such as acoustic neuromas, hemangioblastomas, and meningiomas".
So far, Lupiano has shared one theory. He said the school was located 12 miles from a factory that was used to process, dry, store, package and ship uranium ore to develop the atomic bomb.
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