Posted on February 25, 2014
The Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) was thrilled to deliver the keynote address at the Occupational Lung Cancer Symposium on Monday, February 24, 2014, in Toronto. The symposium, hosted by the Occupational Cancer Research Centre, focused on recent research on the burden and prevalence of major exposures linked to occupational lung cancer, such as asbestos, radon, and diesel engine exhaust. The World Health Organization reports, “Lung cancer, mesothelioma, and bladder cancer are among the most common types of occupational cancers.”
It was wonderful to see many of our Canadian friends in the audience! I am sure Alec, John, Eudice and Sandy will post photos soon.
My keynote presentation, “Lung Cancer Research: Beyond the Bench in the 21st Century,” explored moving from research to action by addressing:
- Turning Anger into Action
- Historical Asbestos Toxic Trade Overview
- Beyond the Bench, Obstacles and Opportunities: Studies, Reports, and New Trends
- Lung Cancer and Mesothelioma Clinical Trial Survey
- Harnessing the Digital Revolution
Prevention remains the only cure. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports, “Millions of U.S. workers are exposed to substances that have tested as carcinogens in animal studies. However, less than 2% of chemicals manufactured or processed in the U.S. have been tested for carcinogenicity. Based on well-documented associations between occupational exposures and cancer, it has been estimated that 4% to 10% of U.S. cancers (48,000 incident cases annually) are caused by occupational exposures.”
This symposium was open to policy-makers, researchers, and medical professionals. Among the esteemed speakers were 2013 ADAO Asbestos Awareness Conference speaker Paul Demers of the Occupational Cancer Centre, Kurt Straif of the International Agency for Research on Cancer, and Anthony Miller of the University of Toronto. ADAO recently had the privilege of hearing Straif and Miller speak at the International Helsinki Conference on Monitoring and Surveillance of Asbestos-Related Diseases.
The Occupational Cancer Research Centre (OCRC), established in 2009, is the first of its kind in Canada. The Centre was established to fill the gaps in our knowledge of occupation-related cancers and to translate these findings into preventive programs to control workplace carcinogenic exposures and improve the health of workers.
For more information about the symposium and to view PowerPoint presentations, please visit the Occupational Cancer Research Centre.