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Occupational Exposure to Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons and Lung Cancer Risk: a Multicenter Study in Europe
  1. Ann C Olsson (olsson{at}
  1. International Agency for Research on Cancer, France
    1. Joelle Fevotte (joelle.fevotte{at}
    1. UMRESTTE (DST/InVS, USB Lyon1, Inrets), St Maurice, France
      1. Tony Fletcher (tony.fletcher{at}
      1. Public and Environmental Health Research Unit, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, United Kingdom
        1. Adrian Cassidy (cassidya{at}
        1. Roy Castle Lung Cancer Research Programme, Cancer Research Centre, University of Liverpool, United Kingdom
          1. Andrea 't Mannetje (a.mannetje{at}
          1. Centre for Public Health Research, Massey University, Wellington Campus, New Zealand
            1. David Zaridze (dgzaridze{at}
            1. Institute of Carcinogenesis, Russian Cancer Research Centre, Russian Federation
              1. Neonila Szeszenia-Dabrowska (neonila{at}
              1. The Nofer Institute of Occupational Medicine, Lodz, Poland
                1. Peter Rudnai (rudnaip{at}
                1. National Institute of Environment Health, Budapest, Hungary
                  1. Jolanta Lissowska (lissowsj{at}
                  1. Cancer Center and Maria Sklodowska-Curie, Institute of Oncology, Warsaw, Poland
                    1. Eleonora Fabianova (eleonora.fabianova{at}
                    1. Department of Occupational Health, Specialized State Health Institute, Banska Bystrica, Slovakia
                      1. Dana Mates (dmates{at}
                      1. Institute of Hygiene, Publich Health, Health Services and Management, Bucharest, Romania
                        1. Vladimir Bencko (vladimir.bencko{at}
                        1. Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Charles University, First Faculty of Medicine, Prague, Czech Republic
                          1. Lenka Foretova (foretova{at}
                          1. Dept of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, Masaryk Memorial Cancer Institute, Brno, Czech Republic
                            1. Vladimir Janout (janout{at}
                            1. Department of Preventive Medicine, Palacky University, Faculty of Medicine, Olomouc, Czech Republic
                              1. Paul Brennan (brennan{at}
                              1. International Agency for Research on Cancer, France
                                1. Paolo Boffetta (boffetta{at}
                                1. International Agency for Research on Cancer, France


                                  Background: Lung cancer incidence in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) is among the highest in the world, and the role of occupational exposures has not been adequately studied in these countries.

                                  Objectives: To investigate the contribution of occupational exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) to lung cancer in CEE.

                                  Methods: A case-control study was conducted in Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Russia, and Slovakia, as well as the United Kingdom (UK) between 1998 and 2002. Occupational and socio-demographic information was collected through interviews from 2861 newly diagnosed lung cancer cases and 2936 population or hospital controls. Industrial hygiene experts in each country evaluated exposure to 70 occupational agents, whereof 15 mixtures containing PAH. Odds ratios (OR) of lung cancer were calculated after adjusting for other occupational exposures and tobacco smoking.

                                  Results: The OR for ever-exposure to PAH in the CEE countries was 0.93 (95% CI 0.77-1.14). The OR for the highest category of cumulative exposure, duration of exposure and intensity of exposure were 1.13 (95% CI 0.80-1.58), 1.02 (95% CI 0.66-1.57) and 1.11 (95% CI 0.60-2.05), respectively. The OR for ever PAH exposure in the UK was 1.97 (95% CI 1.16-3.35).

                                  Conclusion: Occupational PAH exposure does not appear to substantially contribute to the burden of lung cancer in CEE. The apparently stronger effect observed in the UK may be due to high exposure levels and a joint effect with asbestos.

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