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Environ Health Perspect; DOI:10.1289/ehp.1307455

New Exposure Biomarkers as Tools For Breast Cancer Epidemiology, Biomonitoring, and Prevention: A Systematic Approach Based on Animal Evidence

Ruthann A. Rudel,1 Janet M. Ackerman,1 Kathleen R. Attfield,1,2 and Julia Green Brody1
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1Silent Spring Institute, Newton, Massachusetts, USA; 2Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
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This EHP Advance Publication article has been peer-reviewed, revised, and accepted for publication. EHP Advance Publication articles are completely citable using the DOI number assigned to the article. This document will be replaced with the copyedited and formatted version as soon as it is available. Through the DOI number used in the citation, you will be able to access this document at each stage of the publication process.

Citation: Rudel RA, Ackerman JM, Attfield KR, Brody JG. New Exposure Biomarkers as Tools For Breast Cancer Epidemiology, Biomonitoring, and Prevention: A Systematic Approach Based on Animal Evidence. Environ Health Perspect; http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.1307455.

Received: 1 August 2013
Accepted: 29 April 2014
Advance Publication: 12 May 2014

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Abstract

Background: Exposure to chemicals that cause rodent mammary gland tumors is common, but few studies have evaluated potential breast cancer risks in humans.

Objective: The goal of this paper is to facilitate measurement of biomarkers of exposure to potential breast carcinogens in breast cancer studies and biomonitoring.

Methods: We conducted a structured literature search to identify measurement methods for exposure biomarkers for 102 chemicals that cause rodent mammary tumors. To evaluate concordance, we compared human and animal evidence for agents identified as plausibly linked to breast cancer in major reviews. To facilitate future application of exposure biomarkers, we compiled information about relevant cohort studies.

Results: Exposure biomarkers have been developed for nearly three-quarters of these rodent mammary carcinogens. Methods have been published for 73 of the chemicals. Some of the others could be measured with modified versions of existing methods for related chemicals. Exposure to 62 has been measured in humans, 45 in a non-occupationally exposed population. US CDC has measured 23 in the US population. Seventy-five of the rodent mammary carcinogens fall into 17 groups, based on exposure potential, carcinogenicity, and structural similarity. Carcinogenicity in humans and rodents is generally consistent, although comparisons are limited because few agents have been studied in humans. We identified 44 cohort studies that have recorded breast cancer incidence and stored biological samples, with a total of over 3.5 million enrolled women.

Conclusions: Exposure measurement methods and cohort study resources are available to expand biomonitoring and epidemiology related to breast cancer etiology and prevention.


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