Childhood cancer increased with agricultural crop density

childhoodcance4rA new study, published in the Environmental Health by the University of Illinois, has determined that the of (leukemia, acute lymphoid and acute myeloid leukemias (AML)), increases with exposure to agricultural crop density. There was a statistically significant association for a positive relationship between crop density of dry beans and incidence of total leukemia, oats and acute myeloid leukemia, and total leukemia and all leukemias in specific states.

The included 1.6 million children and involved the analysis of incidence data for leukemias, CNS and miscellaneous intracranial and intraspinal neoplasms, and neuroblastoma and other peripheral nervous cell tumors from 2004 through 2008 for children under the age of five; from state cancer registries in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, and Missoura. Data for Iowa was obtained through the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End-Results (SEER) program.

The International Classification of was used to categorize records into specific . Estimates of crop acreage were available for all states for barley, corn, hay, oats, sorghum, , and wheat.

Based on state-level use data, the crops with the highest densities in the study, corn and , had the highest proportion of acres treated with pesticides in six states. The most common used on corn was atrazine and the most common used on was glyphosate. There was a suggestive association between higher density of corn and childhood leukemia in Illinois. Oats were the most associated crop with . The most commonly used 2,4-D, glyphosate, and MCPA is used widely through the . had the highest proportion of acreage treated with herbicides (98 %), (63 %) and (72 %).


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