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NHS gets cancer drugs cheap, men's health habits heritable, and 'idiot-box' makes you stupid

A round-up of the morning’s health news headlines

The NHS gets some of the lowest prices for cancer drugs according to research published in The Lancet Oncology, the BBC reports.

The study of ticket prices – not including any discounts that may be negotiated behind closed doors- places the UK alongside Greece, Spain, and Portugal in getting some of the lowest prices for new drugs.

The authors said more transparency was needed over pricing, as otherwise countries risk over paying – Germany, Sweden, and Switzerland currently pay the most for drugs.

Men’s unhealthy habits could be ‘written into their sperm’, according to The Telegraph, who report a University of Copenhagen study found significant variation in the genes passed on to children by obese and thing men.

Focussing on genes associated with appetite, the researchers say the findings could lead to to health initiatives aimed at changing ‘pre-conception behaviour of the father’.

The study also found variation in the genes passed on by fathers who had lost weight after receiving a gastric band.

And finally, excessive hours slumped, slack-jawed in front of the television could ‘make you stupid’, The Independent reports.

A study categorising how much TV participants watched and then testing mental processing speed and verbale functioning found those watching the most TV were twice as likely to have poor mental functioning.

And high levels of TV watching, and low physical activity in early adulthood were categorised with slower processing speed in middle age.

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