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J Environ Public Health. 2010;2010:759645. doi: 10.1155/2010/759645. Epub 2010 Mar 14.

Environmental exposure to emissions from petrochemical sites and lung cancer: the lower Mississippi interagency cancer study.

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  • 1School of Public Health, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, LA 70112, USA.


To investigate potential links between environmental exposure to petrochemical plant emissions and lung cancer, a population-based case-control study (LMRICS) was conducted in eleven Louisiana parishes bordering the Mississippi River. Cases and age, gender, and race-matched controls were interviewed regarding potential risk factors. Residential history was geocoded to provide indices of long-term proximity to industrial sites. Cases were more likely to have lived near a petrochemical site. Models adjusted for other risk factors, however, showed small or no association with lung cancer (odds ratio for residence within a half-mile of a site = 1.10, 95% confidence interval 0.58-2.08). While associations were strongest for exposures exceeding 15 years, none approached statistical significance and there was no clear dose-response across exposure duration, distance categories, or when sites were grouped according to carcinogenicity rating of chemical releases. Residential proximity to petrochemical plants along the lower Mississippi thus showed no significant association with lung cancer.

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