Exposure to nitrate from drinking water and the risk of childhood cancer in Denmark

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  • Leslie T. Stayner
  • Jorg Schullehner
  • Birgitte Dige Semark
  • Anja Søndergaard Jensen
  • Betina B. Trabjerg
  • Pedersen, Marie
  • Jorn Olsen
  • Birgitte Hansen
  • Mary H. Ward
  • Rena R. Jones
  • Vanessa R. Coffman
  • Carsten B. Pedersen
  • Torben Sigsgaard

Background: There is limited evidence that nitrate, a common contaminant in drinking water, increases the risk of childhood cancers. Our objective was to examine this association in Denmark. Methods: We conducted a nationwide case-control study based on all singletons liveborn to Danish-born parents from 1991 to 2015 (N = 1,219,140) that included 596 leukemias, 180 lymphomas, and 310 central nervous system cancers (CNC) who were 25 mg/L nitrate) was observed for preconception (OR = 1.82, 95%CI:1.09 to 3.04), prenatal (OR = 1.65, 95%CI:0.97 to 2.81), and postnatal exposure (OR = 1.48, 95% CI:0.82 to 2.68) in fully adjusted models. There was also some evidence of an exposure-response in models of continuous nitrate exposure and CNC. Conclusions: Our findings provide some evidence that exposure to nitrate from drinking water may increase the risk of childhood CNC cancer, but not leukemia or lymphoma.

Original languageEnglish
Article number106613
JournalEnvironment International
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2021

    Research areas

  • Nitrate, Drinking water, Childhood leukemia, Lymphoma and central nervous system cancer, N-NITROSO COMPOUNDS, BRAIN-TUMORS, GROUNDWATER

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