Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Increased risk of cancer for computer factory workers

Workers at computer factories are at increased risk of dying of cancer. The largest study of its kind published today in the open access journal Environmental Health looks at over 30,000 deaths of workers who had been employed at IBM factories in the USA.

The study reveals that IBM factory workers were more likely to have died of cancer, including brain, kidney or breast cancer and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, than the rest of the population. The author of the study cannot link these deaths to any specific chemicals or other toxic exposures. The current study confirms previous, smaller studies and highlights clear health risks for workers in computer factories across the world.

Richard Clapp, from the Boston University School of Public Health, USA, studied the causes of death among all IBM factory workers who had worked for the company for at least five years between 1969 and 2001. Clapp analysed the causes of death for 31,941 workers and compared them with causes of death among the American population during this period. The data were obtained from the IBM corporation as part of a California lawsuit against IBM, and the plaintiffs' attorneys contracted with Clapp to carry out the analysis.

The results of Clapp's analysis indicate that there was increased mortality due to several types of cancer, especially in manufacturing workers and workers at particular plants in California, Minnesota, New York, and Vermont. Most notably, there was an excess of deaths due to cancer of the brain and central nervous system. Kidney cancer, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and breast cancer were also found in excess in some groups of workers. It was not possible to link these deaths to specific chemicals or other exposures in the workplace because the information necessary to do this was not available.

The study confirms a small mortality study of just three IBM plants published a year ago by company consultants, which also showed increased deaths due to brain and central nervous system cancer.

Juliette Savin | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Rutgers-led innovation could spur faster, cheaper, nano-based manufacturing
14.02.2018 | Rutgers University

nachricht New study from the University of Halle: How climate change alters plant growth
12.01.2018 | Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Locomotion control with photopigments

Researchers from Göttingen University discover additional function of opsins

Animal photoreceptors capture light with photopigments. Researchers from the University of Göttingen have now discovered that these photopigments fulfill an...

Im Focus: Surveying the Arctic: Tracking down carbon particles

Researchers embark on aerial campaign over Northeast Greenland

On 15 March, the AWI research aeroplane Polar 5 will depart for Greenland. Concentrating on the furthest northeast region of the island, an international team...

Im Focus: Unique Insights into the Antarctic Ice Shelf System

Data collected on ocean-ice interactions in the little-researched regions of the far south

The world’s second-largest ice shelf was the destination for a Polarstern expedition that ended in Punta Arenas, Chile on 14th March 2018. Oceanographers from...

Im Focus: ILA 2018: Laser alternative to hexavalent chromium coating

At the 2018 ILA Berlin Air Show from April 25–29, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT is showcasing extreme high-speed Laser Material Deposition (EHLA): A video documents how for metal components that are highly loaded, EHLA has already proved itself as an alternative to hard chrome plating, which is now allowed only under special conditions.

When the EU restricted the use of hexavalent chromium compounds to special applications requiring authorization, the move prompted a rethink in the surface...

Im Focus: Radar for navigation support from autonomous flying drones

At the ILA Berlin, hall 4, booth 202, Fraunhofer FHR will present two radar sensors for navigation support of drones. The sensors are valuable components in the implementation of autonomous flying drones: they function as obstacle detectors to prevent collisions. Radar sensors also operate reliably in restricted visibility, e.g. in foggy or dusty conditions. Due to their ability to measure distances with high precision, the radar sensors can also be used as altimeters when other sources of information such as barometers or GPS are not available or cannot operate optimally.

Drones play an increasingly important role in the area of logistics and services. Well-known logistic companies place great hope in these compact, aerial...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Industry & Economy
Event News

Ultrafast Wireless and Chip Design at the DATE Conference in Dresden

16.03.2018 | Event News

International Tinnitus Conference of the Tinnitus Research Initiative in Regensburg

13.03.2018 | Event News

International Virtual Reality Conference “IEEE VR 2018” comes to Reutlingen, Germany

08.03.2018 | Event News

Latest News

Wandering greenhouse gas

16.03.2018 | Earth Sciences

'Frequency combs' ID chemicals within the mid-infrared spectral region

16.03.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Biologists unravel another mystery of what makes DNA go 'loopy'

16.03.2018 | Life Sciences

Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>