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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(12), 7207-7228; doi:10.3390/ijerph10127207
Article

Spatial Autocorrelation of Cancer Incidence in Saudi Arabia

1,*  and 2
Received: 6 October 2013; in revised form: 27 November 2013 / Accepted: 28 November 2013 / Published: 16 December 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Spatial Epidemiology)
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Abstract: Little is known about the geographic distribution of common cancers in Saudi Arabia. We explored the spatial incidence patterns of common cancers in Saudi Arabia using spatial autocorrelation analyses, employing the global Moran’s I and Anselin’s local Moran’s I statistics to detect nonrandom incidence patterns. Global ordinary least squares (OLS) regression and local geographically-weighted regression (GWR) were applied to examine the spatial correlation of cancer incidences at the city level. Population-based records of cancers diagnosed between 1998 and 2004 were used. Male lung cancer and female breast cancer exhibited positive statistically significant global Moran’s I index values, indicating a tendency toward clustering. The Anselin’s local Moran’s I analyses revealed small significant clusters of lung cancer, prostate cancer and Hodgkin’s disease among males in the Eastern region and significant clusters of thyroid cancers in females in the Eastern and Riyadh regions. Additionally, both regression methods found significant associations among various cancers. For example, OLS and GWR revealed significant spatial associations among NHL, leukemia and Hodgkin’s disease (r² = 0.49–0.67 using OLS and r² = 0.52–0.68 using GWR) and between breast and prostate cancer (r² = 0.53 OLS and 0.57 GWR) in Saudi Arabian cities. These findings may help to generate etiologic hypotheses of cancer causation and identify spatial anomalies in cancer incidence in Saudi Arabia. Our findings should stimulate further research on the possible causes underlying these clusters and associations.
Keywords: cancer incidence; spatial autocorrelation; spatial pattern; spatial regression; geographical information system; Saudi Arabia cancer incidence; spatial autocorrelation; spatial pattern; spatial regression; geographical information system; Saudi Arabia
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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MDPI and ACS Style

Al-Ahmadi, K.; Al-Zahrani, A. Spatial Autocorrelation of Cancer Incidence in Saudi Arabia. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10, 7207-7228.

AMA Style

Al-Ahmadi K, Al-Zahrani A. Spatial Autocorrelation of Cancer Incidence in Saudi Arabia. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2013; 10(12):7207-7228.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Al-Ahmadi, Khalid; Al-Zahrani, Ali. 2013. "Spatial Autocorrelation of Cancer Incidence in Saudi Arabia." Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 10, no. 12: 7207-7228.



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