Advertisement

Cancer Causes & Control

, 17:749 | Cite as

Cancer and Occupational Exposure to Pentachlorophenol and Tetrachlorophenol (Canada)

  • Paul A. DemersEmail author
  • Hugh W. Davies
  • Melissa C. Friesen
  • Clyde Hertzman
  • Aleck Ostry
  • Ruth Hershler
  • Kay Teschke
Original Paper

Abstract

Objective

The objective of this study is to assess the carcinogenicity of pentachlorophenol and tetrachlorophenol using data from the BC sawmill workers cohort study.

Methods

The cohort consisted of 27,464 men employed by 14 sawmills for 1 year or more between 1950 and 1995. Fatal (1950–1995) and incident (1969–1995) cancers were identified using national registries. Plant records and systematic interviews with senior employees were used to estimate dermal exposure. Comparisons were made with the general BC population and dose-response relationships were assessed using Poisson regression.

Results

There were 1,495 fatal cancer and 2,571 incident cancers. There were no large or statistically significant excesses of any of the specific cancers were observed compared to the general population. Internal analyses showed strong dose-response relationships for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, multiple myeloma, and kidney cancer. These relationships were strongest when exposure was restricted to pentachlorophenol. The strength of the dose-response increased when exposure was lagged by 20 years.

Conclusions

Dermal exposure to pentachlorophenol was associated with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, multiple myeloma, and kidney cancer, but not with other cancers of a priori interest.

Keywords

Chlorophenols Occupational exposure Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma Cancer 

Notes

Acknowledgments

The authors would like to acknowledge the management, employees, owners, and the unions of the participating sawmills for their cooperation and assistance during the study. In addition we would like to acknowledge the work on the original study by Shona Kelley and many others and the technical assistance on the current study provided by Robert Hirtle, Lisa Chen, and others. This study was funded by the Workers’ Compensation Board of British Columbia. Additional support was provided through grants for other portions of the BC Sawmill Workers Cohort Study from the Canadian Institutes for Health Research, the British Columbia Lung Association, and the U.S. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.

References

  1. 1.
    Teschke, K, Hertzman, C, Fenske, R,  et al. 1994A history of process and chemical changes for fungicide application in the western Canadian lumber industry: What can we learn?Appl Occup Environ Hyg9984993Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    IARC Working Group1999IARC Monographs on the Evaluation of the Carcinogenic Risk of Chemicals to HumansInternational Agency for Research on CancerLyonGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Hardell, L, Eriksson, M, Degerman, A 1994Exposure to phenoxyacetic acids, chlorophenols, or organic solvents in relation to histopathology, stage, and anatomical localization of non-Hodgkin’s lymphomasCancer Res5423862389PubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Garabedian, MJ, Hoppin, JA, Tolbert, PE, Herrick, RF, Brann, EA 1999Occupational chlorophenol exposure and non-Hodgkin’s lymphomaJ Occup Environ Med41267272PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Kogevinas, M, Kauppinen, T, Winkelmann, R,  et al. 1995Soft-tissue sarcoma and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in workers exposed to phenoxy herbicides, chlorophenols, and dioxins: two nested case-control studiesEpidemiology6396402PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Erikson, M, Hardell, L, Berg, NO, Möller, T, Axelson, O 1981Soft tissue sarcoma and exposure to chemical substances: a case-referent studyBr J Ind Med382733Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Erikson, M, Hardell, L, Adami, H-O 1990Exposure to dioxins as a risk factor for soft tissue sarcoma: a population-based case–control studyJ Natl Cancer Inst82486490Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Hardell, L, Eriksson, M, Degerman, A 1995Meta-analysis of four Swedish case-control studies on exposure to pesticides as risk factors for soft-tissue sarcoma including the relation to tumour localization and histopathologic typeInt J Oncol6847851Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Hardell, L, Sändstrom, A 1979Case-control study: soft tissue sarcomas and exposure to phenoxyacetic acids or chlorophenolsBr J Cancer39711717PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Hoppin, JA, Tolbert, PE, Herrick, RF,  et al. 1998Occupational chlorophenol exposure and soft tissue sarcoma risk among men aged 30–60 yearsAm J Epidemiol148693703PubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    't Mannetje, A, McLean, D, Cheng, S, Boffetta, P, Colin, D, Pearce, N 2005Mortality in New Zealand workers exposed to phenoxy herbicides and dioxinsOccup Environ Med623440PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Mikiczy, S, Schutz, A, Hagmar, L 1994Cancer incidence and mortality among Swedish leather tannersOccup Environ Med51530535Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Hooiveld, M, Heederik, DJ, Kogevinas, M,  et al. 1998Second follow-up of a Dutch cohort occupationally exposed to phenoxy herbicides, chlorophenols, and contaminantsAm J Epidemiol147891901PubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Kogevinas, M, Becher, H, Benn, T,  et al. 1997Cancer mortality in workers exposed to phenoxy herbicides, chlorophenols, and dioxins. An expanded and updated international cohort studyAm J Epidemiol14510611075PubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Ramlow, JM, Spadacene, NW, Hoag, SR, Stafford, BA, Cartmill, JB, Lerner, PJ 1996Mortality in a cohort of pentachlorophenol manufacturing workers, 1940–1989Am J Ind Med30180194PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Mirabelli, MC, Hoppin, JA, Tolbert, PE, Herrick, RF, Gnepp, DR, Brann, EA 2000Occupational exposure to chlorophenol and the risk of nasal and nasopharyngeal cancers among U.S. men aged 30 to 60Am J Ind Med37532541PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Jappinen, P, Pukkala, E, Tola, S 1989Cancer incidence of workers in a Finnish sawmillScand J Work Environ Health151823PubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Hertzman, C, Teschke, K, Ostry, A,  et al. 1997Mortality and cancer incidence among a cohort of sawmill workers exposed to chlorophenate wood preservativesAm J Pub Health877179PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Teschke, K, Ostry, A, Hertzman, C,  et al. 1998Opportunities for a broader understanding of work and health: multiple uses of an occupational cohort databaseCan J Public Health89132136PubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Hertzman, C, Teschke, K, Dimich-Ward, H, Ostry, A 1988Validity and reliability of a method for retrospective evaluation of chlorophenate exposure in the lumber industryAm J Ind Med14703713PubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Teschke, K, Hertzman, C, Dimich-Ward, H, Ostry, A, Blair, J, Hershler, R 1989A comparison of exposure estimates by worker raters and industrial hygienistsScand J Work Environ Health15424429PubMedGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Howe, GR, Lindsay, J 1981A generalized record linkage computer system for use in medical follow-up studiesComput Biomed Res14327340PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Fenske, RA, Horstman, SW, Bentley, RK 1987Assessment of dermal exposure to chlorophenols in timber millsAppl Ind Hyg2143147Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Demers, PA, Teschke, K, Davies, HW, Kennedy, SM, Leung, V 2000Exposure to dust, resin acids, and monoterpenes in softwood lumber millsAIHAJ61521528PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    NIOSH2000 Life Table Analysis System for the PCUS Department of Health and Human ServicesCincinnati, OHGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Breslow, NE, Day, NE 1987Statistical Methods in Cancer Research. Vol. 2. The Design and Analysis of Cohort Studies. (IARC Scientific Publication no. 32)International Association for Research on CancerLyon, FranceGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Hoppin, JA, Tolbert, PE, Herrick, RF,  et al. 1998Occupational chlorophenol exposure and soft tissue sarcoma risk among men aged 30–60 yearsAm J Epidemiol148693703PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Checkoway, H, Pearce, N, Kriebel, D 2004Research Methods in Occupational Epidemiology2Oxford University PressOxfordGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Woods, JS, Pollisar, L, Severson, RK, Heuser, LS, Kulander, BG 1987Soft tissue sarcoma and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in relation to phenoxyherbicide and chlorinated phenol exposure in western WashingtonJ Natl Cancer Inst78899910PubMedGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Pepelko, WE, Gaylor, DW, Mukerjee, D 2005Comparative toxic potency ranking of chlorophenolsToxicol Indust Health2193111CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Kontsas, H, Rosenberg, C, Tornaeus, J, Mutanen, P, Jäppinen, P 1998Exposure of workers to 2,3,7,8-substituted polichlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxin (PCDD) and dibenzofuran (PCDF) compounds in a sawmill previously using chlorophenol-containing antistain agentsArch Environ health5399108PubMedGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Teschke, K, Marion, SA, Ostry, A,  et al. 1996Reliability of retrospective chlorophenol exposure estimates over five decadesAm J Indust Med30616622CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paul A. Demers
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Hugh W. Davies
    • 1
  • Melissa C. Friesen
    • 1
  • Clyde Hertzman
    • 2
  • Aleck Ostry
    • 2
  • Ruth Hershler
    • 2
  • Kay Teschke
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.School of Occupational and Environmental HygieneUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  2. 2.Department of Health Care and EpidemiologyUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada

Personalised recommendations