Mortality (1950-1999) and cancer incidence (1969-1999) of workers in the Port Hope cohort study exposed to a unique combination of radium, uranium and γ-ray doses.

Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, California, USA.
BMJ Open (Impact Factor: 2.06). 01/2013; 3(2). DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2012-002159
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Uranium processing workers are exposed to uranium and radium compounds from the ore dust and to γ-ray radiation, but less to radon decay products (RDP), typical of the uranium miners. We examined the risks of these exposures in a cohort of workers from Port Hope radium and uranium refinery and processing plant.
A retrospective cohort study with carefully documented exposures, which allowed separation of those with primary exposures to radium and uranium.
Port Hope, Ontario, Canada, uranium processors with no mining experience.
3000 male and female workers first employed (1932-1980) and followed for mortality (1950-1999) and cancer incidence (1969-1999).
Cohort mortality and incidence were compared with the general Canadian population. Poisson regression was used to evaluate the association between cumulative RDP exposures and γ-ray doses and causes of death and cancers potentially related to radium and uranium processing.
Overall, workers had lower mortality and cancer incidence compared with the general Canadian population. In analyses restricted to men (n=2645), the person-year weighted mean cumulative RDP exposure was 15.9 working level months (WLM) and the mean cumulative whole-body γ-ray dose was 134.4 millisieverts. We observed small, non-statistically significant increases in radiation risks of mortality and incidence of lung cancer due to RDP exposures (excess relative risks/100 WLM=0.21, 95% CI <-0.45 to 1.59 and 0.77, 95% CI <-0.19 to 3.39, respectively), with similar risks for those exposed to radium and uranium. All other causes of death and cancer incidence were not significantly associated with RDP exposures or γ-ray doses or a combination of both.
In one of the largest cohort studies of workers exposed to radium, uranium and γ-ray doses, no significant radiation-associated risks were observed for any cancer site or cause of death. Continued follow-up and pooling with other cohorts of workers exposed to by-products of radium and uranium processing could provide valuable insight into occupational risks and suspected differences in risk with uranium miners.

  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: To date no network meta-analysis (NMA) has accounted for baseline variations in viral load when assessing the relative efficacy of interventions for chronic hepatitis B (CHB). We undertook baseline-adjusted and unadjusted analyses using the same data to explore the impact of baseline viral load (BVL) on CHB treatment response. We searched Embase, Medline, Medline in Process and the Cochrane CENTRAL databases for randomised clinical trials (RCTs) of monotherapy interventions at licensed doses for use in CHB. Search strategies comprised CHB disease and drug terms (a combination of controlled vocabulary and free text terms) and also a bespoke RCT filter.The NMA was undertaken in WinBUGs using fixed and random effects methods, using data obtained from a systematic review. Individual patient data (IPD) from an entecavir clinical trial were used to quantify the impact of different baseline characteristics (in particular undetectable viral load (UVL) at 1 year) on relative treatment effect. Study level mean baseline values from all identified studies were used. Results were generated for UVL and presented as relative risks (RRs) and 95% credible intervals (CrIs) using entecavir as reference treatment. Overall, for all eight relevant interventions we identified 3,000 abstracts. Following full text review a total of 35 (including the contents of six clinical study reports) met the inclusion critera; 19 were in hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg)-positive patients and 14 of the 19 contained outcome information of relevance to the NMA.Entecavir and tenofovir studies had heterogeneous patient populations in terms of BVL (mean values 9.29 and 8.65 log10 copies/ml respectively). After adjusting UVL for BVL using an informative prior based on the IPD analysis, the difference between entecavir and tenofovir was not statistically significant (RR 1.27, 95% CrI 0.96 to 1.47 - fixed effects). A similar conclusion was found in all sensitivity analyses. Adjusted tenofovir results were more consistent with observed clinical trial response rates. This study demonstrates the importance of adjusting for BVL when assessing the relative efficacy of CHB interventions in achieving UVL. This has implications for both clinical and economic decision making.
    Systematic reviews. 03/2014; 3(1):21.

Full-text (2 Sources)

Available from
May 23, 2014