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Joint analysis of three European nested case-control studies of lung cancer among radon exposed miners: exposure restricted to below 300 WLM

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Colin Muirhead


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Analyses of lung cancer risk were carried out using restrictions to nested case-control data on uranium miners in the Czech Republic, France, and Germany. With the data restricted to cumulative exposures below 300 working-level-months (WLM) and adjustment for smoking status, the excess relative risk (ERR) per WLM was 0.0174 (95% CI: 0.009-0.035), compared to the estimate of 0.008 (95% CI: 0.004-0.014) using the unrestricted data. Analysis of both the restricted and unrestricted data showed that time since exposure windows had a major effect; the ERR/WLM was six times higher for more recent exposures (5-24 y) than for more distant exposures (25 y or more). Based on a linear model fitted to data on exposures <300 WLM, the ERR WLM of lung cancer at 30 y after exposure was estimated to be 0.021 (95% CI: 0.011-0.040), and the risks decreased by 47% per decade increase in time since exposure. The results from analyzing the joint effects of radon and smoking were consistent with a sub-multiplicative interaction; the ERR WLM was greater for non-smokers compared with current or ex-smokers, although there was no statistically significant variation in the ERR WLM by smoking status. The patterns of risk with radon exposure from the combined European nested case-control miner analysis were generally consistent with those based on the BEIR VI Exposure-Age-Concentration model. Based on conversions from WLM to time weighted averaged radon concentration (expressed per 100 Bq m), the results from this analysis of miner data were in agreement with those from the joint analysis of the European residential radon studies.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Hunter N, Muirhead CR, Tomasek L, Kreuzer M, Laurier D, Leuraud K, Schnelzer M, Grosche B, Placek V, Heribanova A, Timarche M

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Health Physics

Year: 2013

Volume: 104

Issue: 3

Pages: 282-292

Print publication date: 01/03/2013

Date deposited: 01/06/2015

ISSN (print): 0017-907

ISSN (electronic): 1538-5159

Publisher: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins


DOI: 10.1097/HP.0b013e3182765857


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Funder referenceFunder name
EURATOM FIP6-516483European Commission