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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(3), 1139-1152; doi:10.3390/ijerph7031139

A Multidisciplinary Investigation of a Polycythemia Vera Cancer Cluster of Unknown Origin

Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, 4770 Buford Highway NE, Atlanta, GA, 30341, USA
Pennsylvania Department of Health, 7th & Forster Streets, Harrisburg, PA 17120, USA
Mt. Sinai School of Medicine, One Gustave L. Levy Place, New York, NY 10029-6574, USA
Geisinger Health System/Clinic, 100 N. Academy Ave, Danville, PA 17822, USA
Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, 2 Public Square, Wilkes-Barre, PA 18711, USA
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Program of Cancer Registries, 1600 Clifton, Rd NE, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA
Drexel University School of Public Health, 1505 Race Street, Bellet Building 13th Floor, Philadelphia, PA, 19102, USA
UPMC Cancer Pavilion, 3rd Floor, 5150 Centre Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15232, USA
New York Blood Center, 310 East 67th Street, 2-47B, New York, NY 10065, USA
Henry S. Cole & Associates, 7611 S. Osborne Rd, Ste 201, Upper Marlboro, MD 20772, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 29 January 2010 / Revised: 13 March 2010 / Accepted: 16 March 2010 / Published: 17 March 2010
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Epidemiology)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [67 KB, 19 June 2014; original version 19 June 2014]


Cancer cluster investigations rarely receive significant public health resource allocations due to numerous inherent challenges and the limited success of past efforts. In 2008, a cluster of polycythemia vera, a rare blood cancer with unknown etiology, was identified in northeast Pennsylvania. A multidisciplinary group of federal and state agencies, academic institutions, and local healthcare providers subsequently developed a multifaceted research portfolio designed to better understand the cause of the cluster. This research agenda represents a unique and important opportunity to demonstrate that cancer cluster investigations can produce desirable public health and scientific outcomes when necessary resources are available.
Keywords: polycythemia vera; cancer cluster; environmental exposure; Pennsylvania polycythemia vera; cancer cluster; environmental exposure; Pennsylvania
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Seaman, V.; Dearwent, S.M.; Gable, D.; Lewis, B.; Metcalf, S.; Orloff, K.; Tierney, B.; Zhu, J.; Logue, J.; Marchetto, D.; Ostroff, S.; Hoffman, R.; Xu, M.; Carey, D.; Erlich, P.; Gerhard, G.; Roda, P.; Iannuzzo, J.; Lewis, R.; Mellow, J.; Mulvihill, L.; Myles, Z.; Wu, M.; Frank, A.; Gross-Davis, C.A.; Klotz, J.; Lynch, A.; Weissfeld, J.; Weinberg, R.; Cole, H. A Multidisciplinary Investigation of a Polycythemia Vera Cancer Cluster of Unknown Origin. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7, 1139-1152.

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