Advertisement

Cancer Causes & Control

, Volume 27, Issue 4, pp 473–480 | Cite as

Air pollution from traffic and risk for brain tumors: a nationwide study in Denmark

  • Aslak Harbo PoulsenEmail author
  • Mette Sørensen
  • Zorana J. Andersen
  • Matthias Ketzel
  • Ole Raaschou-Nielsen
Original paper

Abstract

Purpose

Air pollution is an established lung carcinogen, and there is increasing evidence that air pollution also negatively affects the brain. We have previously reported an association between air pollution and risk of brain tumors in a cohort study based on only 95 cases. We set out to replicate that finding in a large nationwide case–control study.

Methods

We identified all 4,183 adult brain tumor cases in Denmark in the years 2000–2009 and 8,018 risk set sampled population controls matched on gender and year of birth. We extracted residential address histories and estimated mean residential nitrogen oxides (NO x ) concentrations since 1971 with a validated dispersion model. Categorical and linear odds ratios (OR) and confidence intervals (CI) were calculated with conditional logistic regression models.

Results

The highest risk estimates for any brain cancer were observed among subjects with the highest average exposure levels (80–99 µg/m3: OR 1.27, 95 % CI 0.82–1.96; ≥100 µg/m3: 1.40, 95 % CI 0.87–2.26 as compared to <20 µg/m3 NO x ), but there was no increased OR at NO x levels below 80 µg/m3 and when modeled linearly there was no significant association with risk of brain cancer (OR 1.11, 95 % CI 0.84–1.46 per 100 µg/m3 NO x ). In sub-analysis the OR associated with exposures ≥100 µg/m3 was 2.30 (95 % CI 1.15–4.59) for non-glioma and 0.89 (95 % CI 0.44–1.77) for glioma.

Conclusions

This study did not support the relatively strong linear association between air pollution and risk of brain tumors which was found in our previous study. The suggestion of an increased brain tumor risk at high exposures merits further attention as does the differing results according to tumor morphology.

Keywords

Epidemiology Brain cancer Nitrous oxides Air pollution 

Notes

Acknowledgments

We wish to express particular thanks to Nick Martinussen for his tireless efforts with the data management.

References

  1. 1.
    Bondy ML, Scheurer ME, Malmer B et al (2008) Brain tumor epidemiology: consensus from the Brain Tumor Epidemiology Consortium. Cancer 113:1953–1968CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Loomis D, Grosse Y, Lauby-Secretan B et al (2013) The carcinogenicity of outdoor air pollution. Lancet Oncol 14:1262–1263CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Benbrahim-Tallaa L, Baan RA, Grosse Y et al (2012) Carcinogenicity of diesel-engine and gasoline-engine exhausts and some nitroarenes. Lancet Oncol 13:663–664CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Ranft U, Schikowski T, Sugiri D, Krutmann J, Kramer U (2009) Long-term exposure to traffic-related particulate matter impairs cognitive function in the elderly. Environ Res 109:1004–1011CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Gatto NM, Henderson VW, Hodis HN et al (2014) Components of air pollution and cognitive function in middle-aged and older adults in Los Angeles. Neurotoxicology 40:1–7CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Corea F, Silvestrelli G, Baccarelli A et al (2012) Airborne pollutants and lacunar stroke: a case cross-over analysis on stroke unit admissions. Neurol Int 4:e11CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Power MC, Weisskopf MG, Alexeeff SE, Coull BA, Spiro A III, Schwartz J (2011) Traffic-related air pollution and cognitive function in a cohort of older men. Environ Health Perspect 119:682–687CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Andersen ZJ, Olsen TS, Andersen KK, Loft S, Ketzel M, Raaschou-Nielsen O (2010) Association between short-term exposure to ultrafine particles and hospital admissions for stroke in Copenhagen, Denmark. Eur Heart J 31:2034–2040CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Andersen ZJ, Kristiansen LC, Andersen KK et al (2012) Stroke and long-term exposure to outdoor air pollution from nitrogen dioxide: a cohort study. Stroke 43:320–325CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Block ML, Calderon-Garciduenas L (2009) Air pollution: mechanisms of neuroinflammation and CNS disease. Trends Neurosci 32:506–516CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Genc S, Zadeoglulari Z, Fuss SH, Genc K (2012) The adverse effects of air pollution on the nervous system. J Toxicol 2012:782462PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Boeglin ML, Wessels D, Henshel D (2006) An investigation of the relationship between air emissions of volatile organic compounds and the incidence of cancer in Indiana counties. Environ Res 100:242–254CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    McKean-Cowdin R, Calle EE, Peters JM et al (2009) Ambient air pollution and brain cancer mortality. Cancer Causes Control 20:1645–1651CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Liu CC, Chen CC, Wu TN, Yang CY (2008) Association of brain cancer with residential exposure to petrochemical air pollution in Taiwan. J Toxicol Environ Health A 71:310–314CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Raaschou-Nielsen O, Andersen ZJ, Hvidberg M et al (2011) Air pollution from traffic and cancer incidence: a Danish cohort study. Environ Health 10:67CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Thygesen LC, Daasnes C, Thaulow I, Bronnum-Hansen H (2011) Introduction to Danish (nationwide) registers on health and social issues: structure, access, legislation, and archiving. Scand J Public Health 39:12–16CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Pedersen CB (2011) The Danish civil registration system. Scand J Public Health 39:22–25CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Gjerstorff ML (2011) The Danish cancer registry. Scand J Public Health 39:42–45CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Storm HH, Michelsen EV, Clemmensen IH, Pihl J (1997) The Danish Cancer Registry—history, content, quality and use. Dan Med Bull 44:535–539PubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Raaschou-Nielsen O, Sorensen M, Ketzel M et al (2013) Long-term exposure to traffic-related air pollution and diabetes-associated mortality: a cohort study. Diabetologia 56:36–46PubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Berkowicz R, Ketzel M, Jensen SS, Hvidberg M, Raaschou-Nielsen O (2008) Evaluation and application of OSPM for traffic pollution assessment for a large number of street locations. Environ Model Softw 23:296–303CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Raaschou-Nielsen O, Hertel O, Vignati E et al (2000) An air pollution model for use in epidemiological studies: evaluation with measured levels of nitrogen dioxide and benzene. J Expo Anal Environ Epidemiol 10:4–14CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Ketzel M, Berkowicz R, Hvidberg M, Jensen SS, Raaschou-Nielsen O (2011) Evaluation of AirGIS: a GIS-based air pollution and human exposure modelling system. Int J Environ Pollut 47:226–238CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Ketzel M, Wahlin P, Berkowicz R, Palmgren F (2003) Particle and trace gas emission factors under urban driving conditions in Copenhagen based on street and roof level observations. Atmos Environ 37:2735–2749CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Hertel O, Jensen S, Andersen H et al (2001) Human exposure to traffic pollution. Experience from Danish studies. Pure Appl Chem 73:137–145Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Sorensen M, Hoffmann B, Hvidberg M et al (2012) Long-term exposure to traffic-related air pollution associated with blood pressure and self-reported hypertension in a Danish cohort. Environ Health Perspect 120:418–424CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Andersen ZJ, de Nazelle A, Mendez MA et al (2015) A study of the combined effects of physical activity and air pollution on mortality in elderly urban residents: the Danish diet, cancer, and health cohort. Environ Health Perspect 123:557–563PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Andersen ZJ, Bonnelykke K, Hvidberg M et al (2012) Long-term exposure to air pollution and asthma hospitalisations in older adults: a cohort study. Thorax 67:6–11CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Aslak Harbo Poulsen
    • 1
    Email author
  • Mette Sørensen
    • 1
  • Zorana J. Andersen
    • 2
  • Matthias Ketzel
    • 3
  • Ole Raaschou-Nielsen
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.Danish Cancer Society Research CenterCopenhagen ØDenmark
  2. 2.Department of Public Health, Center for Epidemiology and ScreeningUniversity of CopenhagenCopenhagenDenmark
  3. 3.Department of Environmental ScienceAarhus UniversityRoskildeDenmark

Personalised recommendations