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Mutat Res. 2002 Jan 15;513(1-2):11-5.

Chromosomal aberrations in long-haul air crew members.

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Department of Occupational Medicine, ISPESL-National Institute for Occupational Safety and Prevention, Via Fontana Candida 1, 00040 Monteporzio Catone, Rome, Italy.


The increasing use of air travel suggests the need for risk assessment and cytogenetic analysis of flight personnel, to check for the risk of developing cancer. Taking into consideration occupational risk and possible confounding factors, we used traditional cytogenetics, the micronucleus test and fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) analysis to study 48 male crew members working on long-haul flights and a control group of 48 ground staff. Compared to controls, we detected a significant increase in the relative risk of gaps and breaks (adjusted odds ratio (OR(adj))--7.8; 95% confidence interval (CI) - 2.4-24.9) and of translocations (OR(adj)--5.1; 95% CI 1.5-17.3) in crew members, with a non-significant difference in the other chromosomal aberrations. The possibility of a correlation between translocations and cancer risk highlights the need for preventive measures for aircraft personnel.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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