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  • 1
    Keywords: PROGRAM ; PUBLIC-HEALTH ; POLICY ; ADHERENCE ; PRINCIPLES UNDERLYING SCIENCE ; EPIDEMIOLOGIC ENTERPRISE ; CANCER-EPIDEMIOLOGY ; PLEA ; FALSE ; RECIPE
    Abstract: BACKGROUND: Recently, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) Programme for the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risks to Humans has been criticized for several of its evaluations, and also for the approach used to perform these evaluations. Some critics have claimed that failures of IARC Working Groups to recognize study weaknesses and biases of Working Group members have led to inappropriate classification of a number of agents as carcinogenic to humans. OBJECTIVES: The authors of this Commentary are scientists from various disciplines relevant to the identification and hazard evaluation of human carcinogens. We examined criticisms of the IARC classification process to determine the validity of these concerns. Here, we present the results of that examination, review the history of IARC evaluations, and describe how the IARC evaluations are performed. DISCUSSION: We concluded that these recent criticisms are unconvincing. The procedures employed by IARC to assemble Working Groups of scientists from the various disciplines and the techniques followed to review the literature and perform hazard assessment of various agents provide a balanced evaluation and an appropriate indication of the weight of the evidence. Some disagreement by individual scientists to some evaluations is not evidence of process failure. The review process has been modified over time and will undoubtedly be altered in the future to improve the process. Any process can in theory be improved, and we would support continued review and improvement of the IARC processes. This does not mean, however, that the current procedures are flawed. CONCLUSIONS: The IARC Monographs have made, and continue to make, major contributions to the scientific underpinning for societal actions to improve the public's health.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 25712798
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  • 2
    Abstract: BACKGROUND: Occupational exposure to extremely low-frequency magnetic fields (ELF) is a suspected risk factor for brain tumors, however the literature is inconsistent. Few studies have assessed whether ELF in different time windows of exposure may be associated with specific histologic types of brain tumors. This study examines the association between ELF and brain tumors in the large-scale INTEROCC study. METHODS: Cases of adult primary glioma and meningioma were recruited in seven countries (Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Israel, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom) between 2000 and 2004. Estimates of mean workday ELF exposure based on a job exposure matrix were assigned. Estimates of cumulative exposure, average exposure, maximum exposure, and exposure duration were calculated for the lifetime, and 1 to 4, 5 to 9, and 10+ years before the diagnosis/reference date. RESULTS: There were 3,761 included brain tumor cases (1,939 glioma and 1,822 meningioma) and 5,404 population controls. There was no association between lifetime cumulative ELF exposure and glioma or meningioma risk. However, there were positive associations between cumulative ELF 1 to 4 years before the diagnosis/reference date and glioma [odds ratio (OR) 〉/= 90th percentile vs. 〈 25th percentile, 1.67; 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.36-2.07; PLinear trend 〈 0.0001], and, somewhat weaker associations with meningioma (OR 〉/= 90th percentile vs. 〈 25th percentile, 1.23; 95% CI, 0.97-1.57; PLinear trend = 0.02). CONCLUSIONS: Results showed positive associations between ELF in the recent past and glioma. IMPACT: Occupational ELF exposure may play a role in the later stages (promotion and progression) of brain tumorigenesis.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 24935666
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  • 3
    Keywords: CANCER ; EPIDEMIOLOGY ; CARCINOGENS ; CENTRAL-NERVOUS-SYSTEM ; GLIOMAS ; MATRIX ; CHILDHOOD ; FARMERS ; CHEMICALS ; ADULT BRAIN-TUMORS
    Abstract: OBJECTIVE: To examine associations between occupational exposure to selected organic solvents and meningioma. METHODOLOGY: A multicentre case-control study conducted in seven countries, including 1906 cases and 5565 controls. Occupational exposure to selected classes of organic solvents (aliphatic and alicyclic hydrocarbons, aromatic hydrocarbons, chlorinated hydrocarbons and 'other' organic solvents) or seven specific solvents (benzene, toluene, trichloroethylene, perchloroethylene, 1,1,1-trichloroethylene, methylene chloride and gasoline) was assessed using lifetime occupational histories and a modified version of the FINJEM job-exposure matrix (INTEROCC-JEM). Study participants were classified as 'exposed' when they had worked in an occupation for at least 1 year, with a 5-year lag, in which the estimated prevalence of exposure was 25% or greater in the INTEROCC-JEM. Associations between meningioma and each of the solvent exposures were estimated using conditional logistic regression, adjusting for potential confounders. RESULTS: A total of 6.5% of study participants were ever exposed to 'any' solvent, with a somewhat greater proportion of controls (7%) ever exposed compared with cases (5%), but only one case was ever exposed to any chlorinated hydrocarbon (1,1,1-trichloroethane). No association was observed between any of the organic solvents and meningioma, in either men or women, and no dose-response relationships were observed in internal analyses using either exposure duration or cumulative exposure. DISCUSSION: We found no evidence that occupational exposure to these organic solvents is associated with meningioma.
    Type of Publication: Journal article published
    PubMed ID: 24474387
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