Okayama University


Assoc. Prof. Dr. Takashi Yorifuji Attends WHO Meeting

December 16, 2013

Associate Professor Dr. Takashi Yorifuji of Okayama University's Graduate School of Environmental and Life Science participated in October as the single expert member from Japan in a working group held at Lyon in France to evaluate the relationship of outdoor air pollution and carcinogenicity under the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) of the World Health Organization (WHO).

The working group is comprised of an epidemiology group, exposure group, bioassays group and mechanisms group; Associate Professor Yorifuji is part of the epidemiology group comprised of seven researchers from around the world. The epidemiology group has deliberated on the relationship in particular of various cancers such as lung cancer to outdoor air pollution, based on worldwide epidemiology papers, and has evaluated that "a relationship between outdoor air pollution, in particular particulate matter, and lung cancer has been consistently found and the evidence is sufficient." The IARC, combining the findings of the epidemiology group, bioassays group and mechanisms group, has classified outdoor air pollution and particulate matter as carcinogenic to humans (Group 1) out of its five levels of carcinogenicity. The results of the evaluation are scheduled to be published on the IARC's website as a WHO monograph.

Associate Professor Yorifuji says that "Air pollution and particulate matter are recognized as having a relationship to lung cancer even in regions with lower levels of air pollution than Japan, such as the United States; we certainly need ongoing measures against air pollution in Japan."

International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC): http://www.iarc.fr/