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JAMA. 1989 Aug 4;262(5):634-9.

Environmental exposures in cytogenetically defined subsets of acute nonlymphocytic leukemia.

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Epidemiology Discipline, University of Texas School of Public Health, Houston 77225.

Erratum in

  • JAMA 1990 Feb 2;263(5):662.


Three previous investigations have reported a relationship between clonal chromosome abnormalities in marrow of patients with acute nonlymphocytic leukemia and employment in occupations involving mutagenic chemicals, but the effects of other exposures were not described. Environmental exposure profiles, gathered by questionnaire, were therefore compared using a case-control study design in 235 newly diagnosed patients with acute nonlymphocytic leukemia: 126 with abnormal and 109 with normal karyotypes. The univariate odds ratio for occupation at diagnosis was 4.6, which, when adjusted for demographic and other exposures by logistic regression, was reduced to 2.5 (95% confidence interval, 0.5 to 12.8). Adjusted point estimates for other exposures were 4.3 (1.4 to 13.3) for prior cytotoxic therapy, 1.7 (0.9 to 3.1) for cigarette smoking, and 1.9 (1.0 to 3.4) for alcohol use. Dose-response relationships were present for both tobacco and alcohol consumption. Associations between specific abnormalities (+8, -7I-7q, [corrected] inv16, t[8;21]) and certain exposures were also present. These results suggest that life-style exposures may be associated with cytogenetic lesions in persons with acute nonlymphocytic leukemia.

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