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Mortality From Cancer and Other Causes in an Italian Cohort of Male Rubber Tire Workers

Pira, Enrico MD; Pelucchi, Claudio ScD; Romano, Canzio MD; Manzari, Marco MD; Negri, Eva ScD; La Vecchia, Carlo MD

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: March 2012 - Volume 54 - Issue 3 - p 345–349
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0b013e318244503c
Original Articles

Objective: To investigate mortality among workers of an Italian rubber tire factory employed between 1954 and 2008.

Methods: This cohort study included 6246 men, totaling 190,512 man-years of observation. Employment data were obtained from personnel records, whereas vital status and causes of death were ascertained from local authorities. We computed standardized mortality ratios (SMRs) using national and regional death certification rates.

Results: Mortality was significantly lower than expected for all cancers (SMR = 79) and all causes (SMR = 85). The SMRs were 99 for cancer of stomach, 78 for lung, 121 for urinary bladder, 116 for lymphoma, and 89 for leukemia, none being significant. Decreased mortality emerged for cancers of the oral cavity and pharynx (SMR = 45), esophagus (SMR = 29), colorectum (SMR = 71), liver (SMR = 57), and kidney (SMR = 33).

Conclusions: This study shows no excess cancer risk among male rubber tire workers employed after 1954.

From Dipartimento di Traumatologia (Drs Pira, Romano, and Manzari), Ortopedia e Medicina del Lavoro, Università degli Studi di Torino, Turin, Italy; Istituto di Ricerche Farmacologiche “Mario Negri” (Drs Pelucchi, Negri, and La Vecchia), Milan, Italy; and Sezione di Statistica Medica e Biometria, Dipartimento di Medicina del Lavoro (Dr La Vecchia), Università degli Studi di Milano, Milan, Italy.

Address correspondence to: Claudio Pelucchi, ScD, Istituto di Ricerche Farmacologiche “Mario Negri,” Via Giuseppe La Masa 19–20156 Milan, Italy (

The study was supported by an unconditional grant by Pirelli Tyre S.p.A. The work also was conducted with the contribution of the Italian Association for Research on Cancer, project No. 10068.

Pirelli Tyre S.p.A supported the study. The sponsors had no role in the design, conduct or reporting of this study, or in the decision to submit the manuscript for publication.

©2012The American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine