If your partner's snoring is keeping you awake all night, it may be more than just an irritating fact of life - loud snoring has many more worrying consequences.
Subjecting mice with kidney cancer to reduced oxygen, US and Spanish scientists have found evidence that starving the body of oxygen can trigger the development of tumours by promoting the growth of blood vessels that feed them.
Sleep apnoea, in which the walls of the throat relax and block the airways, is already associated with obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart attacks and strokes. Dr Antoni Vilaseca, of the Hospital Clinic of Barcelona, told a conference in Munich that this indicates that conditions which restrict oxygen may promote cancer.
A report suggested the findings may explain how a bad night's sleep might worsen cancer development and why patients who exercise and get oxygen pumping through their blood may be more likely to beat cancer.