Cancer Causes & Control

, Volume 15, Issue 7, pp 697–706 | Cite as

Mortality Among Workers Employed in the Titanium Dioxide Production Industry in Europe

  • Paolo Boffetta
  • Anne Soutar
  • John W. Cherrie
  • Fredrik Granath
  • Aage Andersen
  • Ahti Anttila
  • Maria Blettner
  • Valerie Gaborieau
  • Stefanie J. Klug
  • Sverre Langard
  • Daniele Luce
  • Franco Merletti
  • Brian Miller
  • Dario Mirabelli
  • Eero Pukkala
  • Hans-Olov Adami
  • Elisabete Weiderpass
Article

Abstract

Objectives: To assess the risk of lung cancer mortality related to occupational exposure to titanium dioxide (TiO2).

Methods: A mortality follow-up study of 15,017 workers (14,331 men) employed in 11 factories producing TiO2 in Europe. Exposure to TiO2 dust was reconstructed for each occupational title; exposure estimates were linked with the occupational history. Observed mortality was compared with national rates, and internal comparisons were based on multivariate Cox regression analysis.

Results: The cohort contributed 371,067 person-years of observation (3.3% were lost to follow-up and 0.7% emigrated). 2652 cohort members died during the follow-up, yielding standardized mortality ratios (SMRs) of 0.87 (95% confidence interval [CI] 0.83–0.90) among men and 0.58 (95% CI 0.40–0.82) among women. Among men, the SMR of lung cancer was significantly increased (1.23, 95% CI 1.10–1.38); however, mortality from lung cancer did not increase with duration of employment or estimated cumulative exposure to TiO2 dust. Data on smoking were available for over one third of cohort members. In three countries, the prevalence of smokers was higher among cohort members compared to the national populations.

Conclusions: The results of the study do not suggest a carcinogenic effect of TiO2 dust on the human lung.

titanium dioxide mortality lung cancer occupation 

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paolo Boffetta
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Anne Soutar
    • 4
  • John W. Cherrie
    • 4
    • 5
  • Fredrik Granath
    • 3
  • Aage Andersen
    • 6
  • Ahti Anttila
    • 7
  • Maria Blettner
    • 8
  • Valerie Gaborieau
    • 1
  • Stefanie J. Klug
    • 8
  • Sverre Langard
    • 9
  • Daniele Luce
    • 10
  • Franco Merletti
    • 11
  • Brian Miller
    • 4
  • Dario Mirabelli
    • 11
  • Eero Pukkala
    • 7
  • Hans-Olov Adami
    • 1
  • Elisabete Weiderpass
    • 1
    • 3
    • 12
  1. 1.International Agency for Research on CancerLyonFrance
  2. 2.Department Medical Epidemiology and BiostatisticsKarolinska InstitutetStockholmSweden
  3. 3.Division of Clinical EpidemiologyGerman Cancer Research CenterHeidelbergGermany
  4. 4.Institute of Occupational MedicineEdinburghUnited Kingdom
  5. 5.University of AberdeenAberdeenUnited Kingdom
  6. 6.Norwegian Cancer RegistryOsloNorway
  7. 7.Finnish Cancer Registry, Institute for Statistical and Epidemiological Cancer ResearchHelsinkiFinland
  8. 8.School of Public HealthUniversity of BielefeldBielefeldGermany
  9. 9.National HospitalOsloNorway
  10. 10.Unit U88National Institute of Health and Medical ResearchSaint MauriceFrance
  11. 11.Unit of Cancer Epidemiology, CeRMS and Center for Oncologic PreventionUniversity of TurinTurinItaly
  12. 12.IARC Unit Field and Intervention StudiesLyon Cedex 08France

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