A University at Albany professor was contacted by four ophthalmology and oncology practices in New York City after doctors diagnosed ten cases of vitreoretinal lymphoma, an extremely rare primary central nervous system lymphoma where cancer occurs in the eyes. Dr. Roxana Moslehi, an associate professor in the UAlbany School of Public Health, looked into the cases, and her research determined that there should only be three cases of VRL in all of New York State over four years. So the cluster in New York City was very rare.
Further study found six out of the ten people had lived in the Soviet Union or Eastern Europe in 1986, the year of Chernobyl.
Dr. Moslehi spoke with WAMC’s Brian Shields about her work.