Childhood cancer and population mixing

Law, Graham R. and Parslow, Roger (2003) Childhood cancer and population mixing. American Journal of Epidemiology, 158 (4). pp. 328-336. ISSN 0002-9262

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Item Type:Article
Item Status:Live Archive


An expert panel reviewed a cluster of childhood leukemias in Fallon, Nevada, and suggested the population mixing hypothesis as an explanation. This hypothesis proposes that nonimmune children exposed to some unknown infection(s), through population mixing, are at increased risk of developing acute lymphoblastic leukemia and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. The United Kingdom Childhood Cancer Study registered 3,838 children with cancer and 7,669 matched controls aged 0-14 years during 1991-1996 in England, Scotland, and Wales. Local area characteristics for each child's residential address at diagnosis were assigned from census data: volume and diversity of population mixing, material deprivation, and rural status. The best-fitting models were chosen for three diagnostic groups: acute lymphoblastic leukemia, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, and all other tumors. Elevated risks of acute lymphoblastic leukemia were found in areas with a low diversity of origins of migrants and for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in areas with a low diversity of origins of child migrants; for other tumors, no covariates were associated. This study, and a survey of 17 published reports on population mixing, suggests that a low diversity of migrant backgrounds may be associated with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. These findings do not support the population mixing hypothesis. Although they support the Greaves delayed infection hypothesis, other aspects of this hypothesis were not addressed. Copyright © 2003 by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health All rights reserved.

Keywords:cancer, child health, medical geography, population characteristics, spatiotemporal analysis, acute lymphoblastic leukemia, adolescent, child, childhood cancer, childhood leukemia, controlled study, health survey, human, hypothesis, infant, major clinical study, migration, newborn, nonhodgkin lymphoma, population density, review, acute lymphocytic leukemia, article, neoplasm, population dynamics, preschool child, United Kingdom, Fallon, Nevada, North America, United States, Western Hemisphere, World, Adolescent, Child, Preschool, Great Britain, Humans, Infant, Newborn, Leukemia, Lymphocytic, Acute, Lymphoma, Non-Hodgkin, Neoplasms
Subjects:B Subjects allied to Medicine > B990 Subjects Allied to Medicine not elsewhere classified
L Social studies > L510 Health & Welfare
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Health & Social Care
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ID Code:26545
Deposited On:09 Mar 2017 15:51

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