Considerable controversy surrounds the question of whether the
two different ytpes of asbestos -- amphilboles and chrysotile --
have different carcinogenic potencies. The "amphibole
hypothesis" holds that chrysotile is less likely to cause lung
cancer and mesothelioma than are the amphiboles. The abiolity
to clarify this question is limited by a lack of quantitative data
with which to estimate separate dose-response curves for the
two fiber types. This proposal seeks funds to study lung cancer
and mesothelimoma risks in a Sovenian cement asbestos plant in
which excellent historical exposure data are available,
distinguishing the two broad classes of asbestos fibers. The
small Grant Investigator, an occupatinal physician and
epidemiology doctoral student, would conduct a detailed
historical exposure reconstruction and case control studies of
lung cancer and mesothelimoma. The cohort of workers
employed in the cement asbestos manufacturing plant of salonit
Anhovo, Slovenia will be constructed from existing detailed wage
lists which date from the 1940s. Cases will be all incident cases
of primary lung cancer or mesothelioma from 1964 to 1994 in
those who were hired after 1959 and who worked at least one
month between 1964 and 1994. They will be identified using
data from the slovenian National Cancer Registry, one of the
oldest national registries in Europe.
Exposure measurements are available for most exposed jobs
begining in 1961. Three different methods of measurement
were used: konimeter measuring particles/cm3, a gravimetric
method measuring milligrams/m3, and membrane filter
Regression analyses will be used to calculate operation-specific
conversion factors among these methods. Cumulative lifetime
exposure to amphilboles and to chrysotile will be estimated
sparately for all cases and controls. Logistic regression models
will be used to estimate separate exposure-resonse curves for
the two fiber types controlling for smoking (smoking history data
available on each worker from medical records).
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