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Environ Health. 2008 Apr 28;7:13. doi: 10.1186/1476-069X-7-13.

Cancer mortality in IBM Endicott plant workers, 1969-2001: an update on a NY production plant.

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  • 1Department of Environmental Health, Boston University School of Public Health, 715 Albany Street, Boston, MA 02118, USA.



In response to concerns expressed by workers at a public meeting, we analyzed the mortality experience of workers who were employed at the IBM plant in Endicott, New York and died between 1969-2001. An epidemiologic feasibility assessment indicated potential worker exposure to several known and suspected carcinogens at this plant.


We used the mortality and work history files produced under a court order and used in a previous mortality analysis. Using publicly available data for the state of New York as a standard of comparison, we conducted proportional cancer mortality (PCMR) analysis.


The results showed significantly increased mortality due to melanoma (PCMR = 367; 95% CI: 119, 856) and lymphoma (PCMR = 220; 95% CI: 101, 419) in males and modestly increased mortality due to kidney cancer (PCMR = 165; 95% CI: 45, 421) and brain cancer (PCMR = 190; 95% CI: 52, 485) in males and breast cancer (PCMR = 126; 95% CI: 34, 321) in females.


These results are similar to results from a previous IBM mortality study and support the need for a full cohort mortality analysis such as the one being planned by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.

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