Events Calendar

Webinar: Environmental Contributors to Childhood Cancers
Wednesday 03 June 2020 - 02:00pm - Wednesday 03 June 2020 03:10pm
Collaborative on Health and the Environment

Scientific research has demonstrated links between environmental exposures and the development of childhood cancers. Furthermore, studies have shown that childhood cancer survivors are more vulnerable to the adverse effects of environmental risks such as air pollution. Leukemia is the most common cancer in children living in industrialized countries, with incidence rates dramatically increasing in the past few decades in certain populations. This rapid upward trend points to the important role of the “environment” in a broad sense, whether acting alone or in concert with genetic factors. During this webinar, Dr. Catherine Metayer will present results on children’s and parents’ exposures to carcinogens such as those contained in paints, solvents, pesticides, air pollution, and tobacco smoke and the risk of childhood leukemia. Dr. Metayer will also discuss maternal diet during pregnancy and prenatal folate/vitamin supplementation and the reduced risk of childhood leukemia. She will conclude, highlighting the need for prevention programs to reduce harmful environmental exposures and promote healthy lifestyles, especially targeting vulnerable populations.

There are a number of potential air and water pollutants emitted during unconventional oil and gas operations that may be harmful to human health, including carcinogens like benzene. Dr. Shaina L. Stacy’s research in Pennsylvania has contributed to a growing body of work, which suggests living close to unconventional gas development can lead to adverse infant health outcomes. Dr. Stacy will discuss this previous research, as well as ongoing work investigating potential impacts on childhood cancer risk, particularly leukemia. To conclude, she will highlight recommendations for how scientists can design and conduct improved epidemiology studies of the health effects of unconventional gas development going forward.

Fine particulate matter air pollution is a known risk factor for respiratory illness that is especially potent among persons with pre-existing pulmonary conditions. Childhood cancer survivors have a high propensity for severe lung conditions due to the long-term toxicities of cancer treatment. The effect of air pollution on the risk for adverse respiratory events among cancer survivors has not been widely studied. During this presentation, Dr. Judy Y. Ou will present novel research on the association between exposure to fine particulate matter and respiratory healthcare events in a young cancer cohort in Utah, a state with severe short-term particulate matter pollution.

Learn more about the speakers and register here.

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