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There is epidemiological evidence that populations with alkaline stool pH are at greater risk for colon cancer than populations with acid stool pH. This association was investigated in the laboratory using the rat-dimethylhydrazine colon carcinogenesis model. Rats with acid stool pH, produced by consumption of lactulose or sodium sulphate or both, had significantly fewer colon tumours after injections of dimethylhydrazine (DMH) than rats treated with DMH alone. The results confirm the hypothesis that acidification of the stool can protect against the induction of colon cancer.