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Night work and prostate cancer risk: results from the EPICAP Study
  1. Méyomo Gaelle Wendeu-Foyet1,
  2. Virginie Bayon2,3,
  3. Sylvie Cénée1,
  4. Brigitte Trétarre4,
  5. Xavier Rébillard5,
  6. Géraldine Cancel-Tassin6,
  7. Olivier Cussenot6,7,8,
  8. Pierre-Jean Lamy5,9,
  9. Brice Faraut2,3,
  10. Soumaya Ben Khedher1,
  11. Damien Léger2,3,
  12. Florence Menegaux1
  1. 1 Team Cancer and Environment, Université Paris-Saclay, Université Paris-Sud, CESP (Center for Research in Epidemiology and Population Health), Inserm, Villejuif, France
  2. 2 Centre du sommeil et de la vigilance, Hôtel Dieu, APHP, Paris, France
  3. 3 Université Paris Descartes, Sorbonne paris Cité, EA 7330 VIFASOM, Sommeil-Vigilance-Fatigue et Santé Publique, Paris, France
  4. 4 Hérault Cancer Registry, EA 2415, ICM, Montpellier, France
  5. 5 Clinique Beau Soleil, Montpellier, France
  6. 6 CeRePP, Hopital Tenon, Paris, France
  7. 7 Sorbonne Université, Institut Universitaire de Cancérologie, GRC n°5 ONCOTYPE-URO, Hopital Tenon, APHP, Paris, France
  8. 8 Department of Urology, Assistance Publique- Hôpitaux de Paris, Hopital Tenon, Paris, France
  9. 9 Imagenome, Labosud, Montpellier, France
  1. Correspondence to Dr Florence Menegaux; florence.menegaux{at}


Objective To investigate the role of night work in prostate cancer based on data from the EPICAP Study.

Methods EPICAP is a French population-based case-control study including 818 incident prostate cancer cases and 875 frequency-matched controls that have been interviewed face to face on several potential risk factors including lifetime occupational history. Detailed information on work schedules for each job (permanent or rotating night work, duration, total number of nights, length of the shift, number of consecutive nights) as well as sleep duration and chronotype, was gathered. Prostate cancer aggressiveness was assessed by Gleason Score.

Results Night work was not associated with prostate cancer, whatever the aggressiveness of prostate cancer, while we observed an overall increased risk among men with an evening chronotype (OR=1.83, 95% CI 1.05 to 3.19). A long duration of at least 20 years of permanent night work was associated with aggressive prostate cancer (OR=1.76, 95% CI 1.13 to 2.75), even more pronounced in combination with a shift length >10 hours or ≥ 6 consecutive nights (OR=4.64, 95% CI 1.78 to 12.13; OR=2.43, 95% CI 1.32 to 4.47, respectively).

Conclusion Overall, ever night work, either permanent or rotating, was not associated to prostate cancer. Nevertheless, our results suggest that a long duration of permanent night work in combination with a long shift length or at least six consecutive nights may be associated with prostate cancer, particularly with aggressive prostate cancer. Further studies are needed to confirm those findings.

  • Epidemiology
  • Cancer
  • Shift Work

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  • Contributors FM, PJL, XR, BT: Study concept and design. OC, GCT, FM, PJL, XR, BT: Data acquisition. VB, BF, DL: Night work questionnaire design. MGWF, SBK, SC: Statistical analysis. MGW-F, VB, BF, DL, FM: Analysis and interpretation of data. MGWF, FM: Drafting of the manuscript.

  • Funding The EPICAP-Chrono project was funded by Institut National du Cancer, Fondation ARC and Ligue nationale contre le cancer. The EPICAP Study was funded by Ligue nationale contre le cancer Ligue contre le cancer du Val-de-Marne, Fondation de France, Agence nationale de sécurité sanitaire de l’alimentation, de l’environnement et du travail (ANSES). MGWF is funded by a 3-year doctoral allowance of the Doctoral School of Public Health (EDSP), Paris-Sud University, for her PhD.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Ethics approval Institutional Review Board.

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