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Comparing JEMs in population-based studies: what if expert assessment and measurements are not available? Authors’ response
  1. Nadine S M Offermans1,
  2. Roel Vermeulen2,3,
  3. Alex Burdorf4,
  4. Susan Peters2,5,
  5. R Alexandra Goldbohm6,
  6. Tom Koeman2,
  7. Martie van Tongeren7,
  8. Timo Kauppinen8,
  9. Ijmert Kant9,
  10. Hans Kromhout2,
  11. Piet A van den Brandt1
  1. 1Department of Epidemiology, GROW School for Oncology and Developmental Biology, Maastricht University Medical Centre, Maastricht, The Netherlands
  2. 2Institute for Risk Assessment Sciences, Environmental Epidemiology Division, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands
  3. 3Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center, Utrecht, The Netherlands
  4. 4Department of Public Health, Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
  5. 5Western Australian Institute for Medical Research, University of Western Australia, Perth, Western Australia, Australia
  6. 6Department of Prevention and Health, TNO Quality of Life, Leiden, The Netherlands
  7. 7Institute of Occupational Medicine, Edinburgh, UK
  8. 8Finnish Institute of Occupational Health, Helsinki, Finland
  9. 9CAPHRI School for Public Health and Primary Care, Department of Epidemiology, Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences, Maastricht University Medical Centre, Maastricht, The Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to Nadine S M Offermans, Department of Epidemiology, Maastricht University Medical Centre, P.O. Box 616, Maastricht 6200 MD, The Netherlands; nadine.offermans{at}

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We appreciate the opportunity to respond to the letter of Behrens and Taeger1 regarding our article ‘Comparison of expert and job-exposure matrix-based retrospective exposure assessment of occupational carcinogens in the Netherlands Cohort Study’.2 Behrens and Taeger raise concerns about ‘validating’ existing job-exposure matrices (JEMs). Instead, they propose a recently developed web-based tool into which existing JEMs can be incorporated as job-specific modules (JSMs, a set of questions relevant to a specific job) and in which exposure estimates can be adapted according to available exposure measurements, expert opinion and study-specific circumstances.3

As cohort members in the large …

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  • Contributors All authors have been involved with the work submitted, share responsibility for and approved the submission of the manuscript.

  • Funding ZonMw.

  • Competing interests None.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Ethics approval The Netherlands Cohort Study was approved by the institutional review boards of the Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research TNO (Zeist) and Maastricht University (Maastricht).

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.