Skin tumor risk among atomic-bomb survivors in Japan
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Objectives: Elevated risks of skin cancer following high doses of ionizing radiation have long been known. Recent reports on atomic-bomb survivors indicate that nonmelanoma skin cancer can be induced at low to medium doses. We studied atomic-bomb survivors to determine the effects of radiation on specific histologic types of skin cancer and to describe the dose-response relationship.
Methods: Cases of melanoma, nonmelanoma skin cancers, and Bowen's disease were ascertained between 1958 and 1987 for the 80,000 cohort members through the population-based Hiroshima and Nagasaki (Japan) tumor registries augmented by searches of other records.
Results: An excess of basal cell carcinoma (n=80), with some suggestion of a non-linear dose-response, was observed. The excess risk decreased markedly as age at exposure increased, and there was no evidence for an interaction between ionizing and ultraviolet radiation. No dose-response was found for squamous cell carcinoma (n=69). The excess relative risk point-estimates were large, but statistically nonsignificant for both melanoma (n=10) and Bowen's disease (n=26).
Conclusions: The basal layer of the epidermis appears to be quite sensitive to radiation carcinogenesis, particularly at a young age. The suprabasal layer seems to be more resistant, as shown by the lack of an association for squamous cell carcinomas.
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- Skin tumor risk among atomic-bomb survivors in Japan
Cancer Causes & Control
Volume 9, Issue 4 , pp 393-401
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- Kluwer Academic Publishers
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- Atomic-bomb survivors
- basal cell carcinoma
- radiation dose
- radiation effects
- squamous cell carcinoma
- Industry Sectors
- Author Affiliations
- 1. Radiation Epidemiology Branch, National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, USA
- 2. Department of Statistics, Institute for Developmental Research, Aichi Human Service Center, Aichi Prefectural Colony, Japan
- 3. Department of Epidemiology, Institute for Developmental Research, Aichi Human Service Center, Aichi Prefectural Colony, Japan
- 4. Consultant at the Radiation Effects Research Foundation (RERF), Hiroshima, Japan
- 5. Department of Morphology, Institute for Developmental Research, Aichi Human Service Center, Aichi Prefectural Colony, Japan
- 6. Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nagasaki University, Nagasaki, Japan
- 7. Research Laboratory, Welfare Association Onomichi General Hospital, Onomichi, Japan
- 8. Department of Public Health and Division of Persistent Oncogenic Viruses, Center of Shronic Viral Diseases, Kagoshima University School of Medicine, Kagoshima, Japan