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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(6), 2320-2330; doi:10.3390/ijerph8062320

Exposure to Multiple Pesticides and Risk of Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma in Men from Six Canadian Provinces

Occupational Cancer Research Centre, 505 University Avenue, 14th floor, Toronto, Ontario M5G 1X3, Canada
Cancer Care Ontario, 505 University Avenue, 14th floor, Toronto, Ontario M5G 1X3, Canada
Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, 155 College Street, 6th floor, Toronto, Ontario M5T 3M7, Canada
Samuel Lunenfeld Research Institute, Mount Sinai Hospital, 60 Murray Street, Toronto, Ontario M5G 1X5, Canada
BC Cancer Agency, 675 West 10th Avenue, Vancouver, British Columbia V5Z 1L3, Canada
School of Population and Public Health, University of British Columbia, 2206 East Mall, Vancouver, British Columbia V6T 1Z3, Canada
Department of Community Health and Epidemiology, University of Saskatchewan, Health Science Building, 107 Wiggins Road, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan S7N 5E5, Canada
Canadian Centre for Health and Safety in Agriculture, Royal University Hospital, University of Saskatchewan, Room 3608, Wing 3E, 103 Hospital Drive, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan S7N 0W8, Canada
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 20 May 2011 / Revised: 9 June 2011 / Accepted: 9 June 2011 / Published: 21 June 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pesticides and Health)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [197 KB, uploaded 19 June 2014]


Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) has been linked to several agricultural exposures, including some commonly used pesticides. Although there is a significant body of literature examining the effects of exposure to individual pesticides on NHL, the impact of exposure to multiple pesticides or specific pesticide combinations has not been explored in depth. Data from a six-province Canadian case-control study conducted between 1991 and 1994 were analyzed to investigate the relationship between NHL, the total number of pesticides used and some common pesticide combinations. Cases (n = 513) were identified through hospital records and provincial cancer registries and controls (n = 1,506), frequency matched to cases by age and province of residence, were obtained through provincial health records, telephone listings, or voter lists. In multiple logistic regression analyses, risk of NHL increased with the number of pesticides used. Similar results were obtained in analyses restricted to herbicides, insecticides and several pesticide classes. Odds ratios increased further when only ‘potentially carcinogenic’ pesticides were considered (OR[one pesticide] = 1.30, 95% CI = 0.90–1.88; OR[two to four] = 1.54, CI = 1.11–2.12; OR[five or more] = 1.94, CI = 1.17–3.23). Elevated risks were also found among those reporting use of malathion in combination with several other pesticides. These analyses support and extend previous findings that the risk of NHL increases with the number of pesticides used and some pesticide combinations.
Keywords: occupational cancer; non-Hodgkin lymphoma; pesticides; case-control study occupational cancer; non-Hodgkin lymphoma; pesticides; case-control study
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

Hohenadel, K.; Harris, S.A.; McLaughlin, J.R.; Spinelli, J.J.; Pahwa, P.; Dosman, J.A.; Demers, P.A.; Blair, A. Exposure to Multiple Pesticides and Risk of Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma in Men from Six Canadian Provinces. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8, 2320-2330.

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