Chromosomal changes seen in long-term airline pilots

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - New research suggests that airline pilots with long-term flying experience may be exposed to higher than average levels of radiation, resulting in more chromosomal translocations than usually seen.

Further studies with longer follow-up and more subjects, however, will be needed to determine if these pilots are at increased risk for cancer, according to the report in the online issue of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

Chromosomal translocations occur when a chromosome fragment breaks off and attaches to another. This can lead to a range of medical problems, such as leukemia, breast cancer, schizophrenia or muscular dystrophy, depending on were the fragments reattach.

“Airline pilots are exposed to cosmic ionizing radiation, but few flight crew studies have examined translocations in relation to flight experience,” Dr. Lee C. Yong, from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Cincinnati, Ohio, and colleagues explain.

The research team therefore looked for chromosome translocations in the blood cells of 50 airline pilots and from 50 comparison subjects.

On average, chromosomal translocations were just as common in airline pilots as in the control subjects. However, among pilots, the frequency of translocations was directly related to flight years. For each 1-year increase in flight years, the likelihood of a translocation rose by 6 percent.

Relative to pilots in the lowest quartile of flight years, those in the highest quartile were 2.59-times more likely to have chromosomal translocations, the report indicates.

“Although the results of epidemiological studies on cancer risk among pilots have been inconsistent, many of these studies involved relatively short follow-up periods” with “relatively young” subjects so evaluation of radiation-associated cancers could not be performed, the investigators note.

SOURCE: Occupational and Environmental Medicine 11, 2008.

Source

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Related Posts:


LONDON (Reuters) - A chemical commonly used to make rubber products may cause cancer in people exposed to fumes during the manufacturing process, British researchers said on Tuesday. Workers exposed to 2-mercaptobenzothiazole, or MBT, at a rubber chemicals plant in North Wales were twice as likely to develop colon cancer and four times as likely to

Full Post: Chemical used in making rubber linked to cancer
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - A study of Vietnam War era veterans shows that exposure to Agent Orange is associated with more than a two-fold increased risk of prostate cancer, earlier disease onset, and prostate cancer with more aggressive features. “Consideration should be made to classify this group of individuals as ‘high risk’, just like men

Full Post: Agent Orange exposure linked to prostate cancer
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Countering the findings from a 2005 study, new research supported by the United States National Institutes of Health indicates that stimulants used in the treatment of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) do not cause chromosomal changes in children. The earlier work identified an increased frequency of DNA damage and structural aberrations in

Full Post: ADHD meds do not induce cell damage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - New research indicates that while low-dose CT of the chest can identify lung cancers at an early, more treatable stage, it can also lead to unnecessary major surgery that detects no cancer. The Pittsburgh Lung Screening Study is the largest single-institution investigation of CT lung cancer screening in current and former

Full Post: CT lung cancer screening offers pros and cons
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

By Anne Harding NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - A new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that health care workers are more likely to die from bloodborne infections and related illnesses than people working in other occupations. “There is evidence that over the past 20 to 25 years health care workers have been

Full Post: Working in health care can be risky, study hints

Site Navigation

Most Read

Search