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Hurley, Susan; Nelson, David O.; Bernstein, Leslie; Reynolds, Peggy

doi: 10.1097/EDE.0000000000000306
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Cancer Prevention Institute of California, Berkeley, CA, susan.hurley@cpic.org

Department of Population Sciences, Beckman Research Institute, City of Hope, Duarte, CA

Cancer Prevention Institute of California, Berkeley, CA

Division of Epidemiology, Department of Health Research and Policy, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA

We thank the readers for their interest in our article and for suggesting the use of the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) Day-Night Band (DNB) data1 as a means for estimating levels of outdoor light-at-night (OLAN). At the time we initiated our study, these data were not yet available and thus we relied on the best Defense Meteorological Satellite Program data2 that existed at the time. We agree that the higher resolution of the VIIRS DNB data allows for more precise area estimates of OLAN and greater potential to distinguish effects from other urban-related risk factors. We cannot, however, assess the validity of the authors’ assertion that the “DNB data from 2012 provides a better indicator of past OLAN exposure than Defense Meteorological Satellite Program at most urban locations…” Depending on the research question being addressed, the degree to which these two alternative data sources are able to capture historical OLAN exposure is an important issue to consider. While we plan to explore the use of the VIIRS DNB data in our own future research, and would certainly encourage other researchers to do the same, a careful evaluation of historical concordance of exposure estimates based on these two data sources would be prudent.

Susan Hurley

David O. Nelson

Cancer Prevention Institute of California

Berkeley, CA

susan.hurley@cpic.org

Leslie Bernstein

Department of Population Sciences

Beckman Research Institute

City of Hope

Duarte, CA

Peggy Reynolds

Cancer Prevention Institute of California

Berkeley, CA

Division of Epidemiology

Department of Health Research and Policy

Stanford University School of Medicine

Stanford, CA

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REFERENCES

1. National Aeronautics and Space Administration Goddard Space Flight Center. Suomi NPP VIIRS Land. June 26, 2014. Available at: http://viirsland.gsfc.nasa.gov/index.html. Accessed January 22, 2015
2. Image and Data Processing by NOAA’s National Geophysical Data Center. DMSP Data Collected by the US Air Force Weather Agency. Available at: http://ngdc.noaa.gov/eog. Accessed January 22, 2015.
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