By Sy Mukherjee
January 23, 2019

Hello and happy hump day, readers.

Your friendly neighborhood newsletter author has, unfortunately, fallen prey to that most prolific of winter maladies – the common cold. So it’ll have to be a short one for today.

But I did want to highlight what’s been a somewhat under-the-radar public health story. Addiction to deadly drugs such as opioids (illicit or otherwise) has, understandably, soaked up a lot of the media spotlight in recent years. But legal, and more easily-available substances, can pose significant problems of their own.

Case in point: Alcohol-related liver disease has now overtaken hepatitis C infection as the number one reason for liver transplants in America, according to a new JAMA study.

Now, it’s important to note that there are several factors behind this trend. For instance, popular new drugs that can actually cure hepatitis C infection play a significant role, according to researchers.

But alcohol use disorders have risen sharply among young adults, and especially in women, over the past decade. In fact, the number of drinkers in the 25-to-34 year old age cohort who died as a cause of liver cirrhosis nearly tripled between 1999 and 2016.

Read on for the day’s news.

Sy Mukherjee
@the_sy_guy
sayak.mukherjee@fortune.com

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