Cancer Causes & Control

, Volume 11, Issue 2, pp 177–184 | Cite as

Repeated measurements of organochlorine exposure and breast cancer risk (Denmark)

  • Annette Pernille Høyer
  • Torben Jørgensen
  • Philippe Grandjean
  • Helle Bøggild Hartvig


Objective: To prospectively evaluate if repeated measurements of organochlorine exposure provide a more precise measure of breast cancer risk.

Methods: In the Copenhagen City Heart Study (CCHS) participants donated blood twice, in 1976–1978 and 1981–1983. Information on breast cancer risk factors was obtained through standardized questionnaires. A cohort nested case–control study of 155 cases and 274 matched breast cancer-free controls who had participated in both CCHS examinations was conducted. The average serum organochlorine concentration over the course of the two examinations was used, testing a possible association between organochlorine exposure and breast cancer risk.

Results: A high serum concentration of p,p′-DDT over the course of the two examinations was associated with a more than three-fold significantly increased risk of breast cancer, and a dose–response relationship was apparent. Furthermore, the risk of breast cancer increased with increasing serum concentrations of PCB congener 118 and 138 and the total amount of DDT isomers (ΣDDT), but the trends were not significant.

Conclusion: This study provides new evidence of the adverse effect of some organochlorines on breast cancer risk. Furthermore, repeated assessment of exposure during a relevant time period may provide a more precise risk estimate than a single measurement.

breast cancer risk DDT organochlorine exposure PCB pesticides 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Annette Pernille Høyer
    • 1
  • Torben Jørgensen
    • 2
  • Philippe Grandjean
    • 3
    • 4
  • Helle Bøggild Hartvig
    • 5
  1. 1.Copenhagen Center for Prospective Populations StudiesDenmark
  2. 2.Center of Preventive MedicineKAS GlostrupDenmark
  3. 3.Departments of Environmental Health and NeurologyBoston Schools of Medicine and Public HealthUSA
  4. 4.Institute of Community HealthOdense UniversityDenmark
  5. 5.Department of BiostatisticsUniversity of CopenhagenDenmark

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