Environment and Breast Cancer: Science Review

Evidence From Humans
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Analyses of exposure to polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins, furans, and hexachlorocyclohexane and different health outcomes in a cohort of former herbicide-producing workers in Hamburg, Germany
Flesch-Janys, D. Teratogenesis, Carcinogenesis, and Mutagenesis. 1997/1998. 17:4-5, 257-64.
Topic area
Environmental pollutant - Dioxin, herbicide
Study design
Other: Cohort mortality follow up.
Study Participants
Number of Controls
1189 males
Participant selection: Inclusion and exclusion criteria
Criteria used to select participants in the study.
Male employees of Boehringer Company, Hamburg plant, which produced herbicides and insecticides, including 2,4,5-T; 2,4,5-TCP; and hexachlorocyclohexane from 1952 -1984. Identified from company and union records. Compared with German population.
Exposure Investigated
Exposures investigated
2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (2,3,7,8-TCDD) and higher chlorinated dioxins and furans (PCDD/F) assessed from job history. Estimates for all workers were based on time working in 14 different production departments. Exposures were assigned to depa
How exposure was measured
Job history Biological
Exposure assessment comment
Exposure to multiple chemicals occurred, and these exposures cannot realistically be assessed entirely independently.
Breast cancer outcome investigated
Mortality from breast cancer: male, from 1952-1992
Ethnic groups with separate analysis
If this study provided a separate analysis by ethnic or racial group, the groups are listed here.
Confounders considered
Other breast cancer risk factors, such as family history, age at first birth, and hormone replacement therapy use, that were taken into account in the study.
Not controlled.
Genetic characterization included
If the study analyzed relationships between environmental factors and inherited genetic variations, this field will be marked “Yes.” “No”, if not.
Description of major analysis
Standardized mortality ratio
Author address
Medical Centre for Chemical Workers' Health, Hamburg, Germany.