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P025 Lung cancer risk among firefighters when accounting for tobacco smoking – preliminary results from a pooled analysis of case-control studies from europe, canada, new zealand and china
  1. Carolina Bigert1,
  2. Per Gustavsson1,
  3. Kurt Straif2,
  4. Dirk Taeger3,
  5. Beate Pesch3,
  6. Benjamin Kendzia3,
  7. Joachim Schüz2,
  8. Isabelle Stücker4,5,
  9. Florence Guida4,5,
  10. Irene Brüske6,
  11. Heinz-Erich Wichmann7,8,9,
  12. Angela C Pesatori10,11,
  13. Maria Teresa Landi12,
  14. Neil Caporaso12,
  15. Lap Ah Tse13,
  16. Ignatius Tak-sun Yu13,
  17. Jack Siemiatycki14,
  18. Jérôme Lavoué14,
  19. Lorenzo Richardi15,
  20. Dario Mirabelli15,
  21. Lorenzo Simonato16,
  22. Karl-Heinz Jöckel17,
  23. Wolfgang Ahrens18,
  24. Hermann Pohlabeln18,
  25. Adonina Tardón19,
  26. David Zaridze20,
  27. John K Field21,
  28. Andrea‘t Mannetje22,
  29. Neil Pearce22,
  30. John McLaughlin23,
  31. Paul Demers24,
  32. Neonila Szeszenia-Dabrowska25,
  33. Jolanta Lissowska26,
  34. Peter Rudnai27,
  35. Eleonora Fabianova28,
  36. Rodica Stanescu Dumitru29,
  37. Vladimir Bencko30,
  38. Lenka Foretova31,
  39. Vladimir Janout32,33,
  40. Paolo Boffetta34,
  41. Susan Peters35,36,
  42. Roel Vermeulen35,
  43. Hans Kromhout35,
  44. Thomas Brüning3,
  45. Ann C Olsson2
  1. 1Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
  2. 2International Agency for Research on Cancer, Lyon, France
  3. 3Institute for Prevention and Occupational Medicine of the German Social Accident Insurance – Institute of the Ruhr-Universität Bochum (IPA), Bochum, Germany
  4. 4Inserm, Centre for Research in Epidemiology and Population Health (CESP), U1018, Environmental Epidemiology of Cancer Team, F-94807, Villejuif, France
  5. 5Université Paris-Sud, UMRS 1018, F-94807, Villejuif, France
  6. 6Institut Für Epidemiologie I, Deutsches Forschungszentrum Für Gesundheit Und Umwelt, Neuherberg, Germany
  7. 7Institute of Medical Informatics, Biometry and Epidemiology, Chair of Epidemiology, Ludwig Maximilians University, Munich, Germany
  8. 8Helmholtz Centre Munich, Institute of Epidemiology I, Munich, Germany
  9. 9Institute of Medical Statistics and Epidemiology, Technical University Munich, Germany
  10. 10Department of Clinical Sciences and Community Health, Università Degli Studi Di Milano, Milan, Italy
  11. 11IRCCS Ca’Granda Foundation, Milan, Italy
  12. 12National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, USA
  13. 13Division of Occupational and Environmental Health, School of Public Health and Primary Care, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China
  14. 14Research Centre of University of Montréal Hospital Centre, University of Montréal, Montréal, Canada
  15. 15Cancer Epidemiology Unit, Department of Medical Sciences, University of Turin, Turin, Italy
  16. 16Department of Environmental Medicine and Public Health, University of Padua, Padua, Italy
  17. 17Institute for Medical Informatics, Biometry and Epidemiology, University of Duisburg-Essen, Essen, Germany
  18. 18Bremen Institute for Prevention Research and Social Medicine, Bremen, Germany
  19. 19CIBERESP, University of Oviedo, Oviedo, Spain
  20. 20Russian Cancer Research Centre, Moscow, Russia
  21. 21Roy Castle Lung Cancer Research Programme, Cancer Research Centre, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK
  22. 22Centre for Public Health Research, Massey University, Wellington, New Zealand
  23. 23Public Health Ontario, Toronto, Canada
  24. 24Occupational Cancer Research Centre, Cancer Care Ontario, Toronto, Canada
  25. 25The Nofer Institute of Occupational Medicine, Lodz, Poland
  26. 26The M Sklodowska-Curie Cancer Centre and Institute of Oncology, Warsaw, Poland
  27. 27National Public Health Centre, Budapest, Hungary
  28. 28Regional Authority of Public Health, Banska Bystrica, Slovakia
  29. 29Institute of Public Health, Bucharest, Romania
  30. 30Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, 1st Faculty of Medicine, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic
  31. 31Masaryk Memorial Cancer Institute, Brno, Czech Republic
  32. 32Palacky University, Faculty of Medicine, Olomouc, Czech Republic
  33. 33Faculty of Medicine, Ostrava University, Ostrava, Czech Republic
  34. 34The Tisch Cancer Institute and Institute for Translational Epidemiology, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, USA
  35. 35Institute for Risk Assessment Sciences, Utrecht, The Netherlands
  36. 36Occupational Respiratory Epidemiology, School of Population Health, University of Western Australia, Perth, Australia


Objectives Firefighters are potentially exposed to a wide variety of chemical compounds during the course of their work and inhalation is considered to be the major source of exposure. A large number of human carcinogens have been detected in smoke at fires. The aim was to investigate the risk of lung cancer among firefighters, while controlling for smoking habits.

Methods We used data from the SYNERGY project including pooled information on lifetime work histories and smoking habits for 14,748 male lung cancer cases and 17,543 controls from 14 case-control studies conducted in Europe, Canada, New Zealand and China. There were 190 men who had ever worked as a firefighter (based on ISCO-68), among them 86 cases and 104 controls. Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were estimated by unconditional logistic regression, adjusted for study, age, smoking, and ever employment in an occupation with established lung cancer risk.

Results We observed no increased risk of lung cancer in firefighters, neither before (OR = 1.03, 95% CI: 0.77–1.38) nor after (OR = 0.95, 95% CI: 0.68–1.32) adjustment for smoking and exposure to other occupational lung carcinogens. There was no evidence of a trend of increasing lung cancer risk with increasing duration of work as a firefighter (p = 0.58) and no significant heterogeneity in lung cancer risk among firefighters across the studies. None of the major histological subtypes of lung cancer was associated with work as a firefighter.

Conclusions We found no evidence of an excess lung cancer risk related to occupational exposure as a firefighter, when lifetime history of tobacco smoking and exposure to other occupational lung carcinogens was taken into account.

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