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Parental smoking, maternal alcohol, coffee and tea consumption during pregnancy and childhood malignant central nervous system tumours: the ESCALE study (SFCE)*

Plichart, Matthieua b; Menegaux, Florencea b; Lacour, Brigittea b d; Hartmann, Olivierc; Frappaz, Didierf; Doz, Françoisg; Bertozzi, Anne-Isabelleh; Defaschelles, Anne-Sophiei; Pierre-Kahn, Alainj; Icher, Célinek; Chastagner, Pascale; Plantaz, Dominiquel; Rialland, Xavierm; Hémon, Denisa b; Clavel, Jacquelinea b n

European Journal of Cancer Prevention: August 2008 - Volume 17 - Issue 4 - p 376-383
doi: 10.1097/CEJ.0b013e3282f75e6f
Research papers: Lifestyle Factors

Parental smoking and maternal alcohol and caffeinated beverage consumption are prevalent exposures which may play a role, either directly or through their influence on metabolism, in the aetiology of childhood malignant central nervous system (CNS) tumours. The hypothesis was investigated in the Epidemiological Study on childhood Cancer and Leukemia ESCALE study, a national population-based case–control study carried out in France in 2003–2004. The study included 209 incident cases of CNS tumours and 1681 population-based controls, frequency matched with the cases by age and sex. The data were collected through a standardized telephone interview of the biological mothers. No association between maternal smoking during pregnancy and CNS tumours [odds ratio (OR): 1.1 (0.8–1.6)] was observed. Paternal smoking during the year before birth was associated with CNS tumours (P for trend=0.04), particularly astrocytomas [OR: 3.1 (1.3–7.6)]. Maternal alcohol consumption during pregnancy was not associated with CNS tumours. Associations between ependymomas and the highest consumption of coffee [OR: 2.7 (0.9–8.1)] and tea [OR: 2.5 (1.1–5.9)] were observed. A strong association between CNS tumours and the highest maternal consumption of both coffee and tea during pregnancy was observed [OR: 4.4 (1.5–13)]. The results constitute additional evidence for a role of paternal smoking and suggest that maternal coffee and tea consumption during pregnancy may also increase the risk of CNS tumours. The study does not suggest an increased risk of CNS tumours related to alcohol consumption during pregnancy.

aINSERM, U754, Villejuif

bUniv Paris-Sud, UMR-S754, IFR69, Villejuif

cGustave Roussy, Institute, Villejuif

dFrench National Registry of Childhood Solid Tumours, Nancy

eChildren's Hospital, Vandoeuvre les Nancy

fLéon Bérard Centre, Lyon

gCurie Institute, Paris

hChildren's Hospital, Toulouse

iOscar Lambret Centre, Lille

jChildren's Hospital of Necker, Paris

kPellegrin Tripode Hospital, Bordeaux

lPaediatric Department, Grenoble

mAngers Hospital, Angers

nFrench National Registry of Childhood Haematopoietic Malignancies, France

Correspondence to Dr Florence Menegaux, MD, PhD, INSERM U754, 16, av. Paul Vaillant-Couturier, Villejuif Cedex F-94807, France

Tel: +33 1 45 59 51 53; fax: +33 1 45 59 51 91; e-mail:

*SFCE: Société Française de lutte contre les Cancers de l'Enfant et de l'Adolescent.

Received 26 March 2007 Accepted 30 August 2007

© 2008 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.