Environment Contamination as Factor of Oncologic Pathologies
Assessment of Technogenic and Radiation Risk Factors Giving Rise to Oncologic Pathologies of the Population Dwelling in a Region of Intensive Technogenic Effect upon the Environment (Taking the Mangistau Area of the RK as an Example)
Tech Area / Field
- ENV-MRA/Modelling and Risk Assessment/Environment
- ENV-EHS/Environmental Health and Safety/Environment
3 Approved without Funding
National Nuclear Center of the Republic of Kazakstan / Institute of Nuclear Physics, Kazakstan, Almaty
- Kazakh Research Institute of Oncology and Radiology, Kazakstan, Almaty
- US Department of Health & Human Services / National Institute of Health / National Cancer Institute / Radiation Epidemiology Branch, USA, MD, Bethesda\nBaylor College of Medicine, USA, TX, Houston
Project summaryThere is constant growth of oncological morbidity is observed as for the population living in the highly urbanized territories where nuclear and chemical industrial technologies, the objects of mining and oil industry, etc. are concentrated due to common deterioration of the situation caused by drastic intensification of technogenic and radiation contamination of the environment. A special danger of this tendency consists in the revealed interrelations between the rise of certain types of oncological pathologies and accumulation of chromosome aberrations as affected by a complex of physical and chemical factors (such as carcinogens, mutagens, radionuclides). E.g. considerable number of certain human oncological pathologies is ascertained being accompanied by a range of genes mutations. That’s why these factors affecting even as minor ones, there may be alteration of the gene pool structure of the human populations dwelling in the highly urbanized territories for a relatively short period of time equal to several generation lifetimes, at the most.
As for the Republic of Kazakhstan, there is no any common methodology now to assess ecological situations in the territories characterized by intensive technogenic and radiation load, which can be compatible with a monitoring system to reveal oncological pathologies of the population. The methodology of similar region investigation is usually based on retrospective analysis with a view of constructing some empirical model describing effect of different dozes of the certain risk factors on a representative population sample being exposed to the factors. Such an approach needs already revealed technogenic risk factors giving rise to certain oncological pathologies of the population as well as expressed regional gradient of the factors, and all these makes possible charting “dose - effect” relations for different doses of the factor impact. These conditions are not met entirely in the Republic of Kazakhstan for there one can run into a difficulty to choose a region characterized by preferable influence of a certain risk factor initiating rise of oncological pathologies. The situation is stipulated by the technogenic load structure additionally complicated with natural-climatic condition heterogeneity and population ethnic composition.
Within the framework of the Project one supposes elaborating a methodological basis to reveal and study risk factors of physical and chemical nature giving rise to separate types of oncological pathologies of highly urbanized population dwelling in the regions of intensive technogenic and radiation load. With that end in view complex ecological and radioecological investigation in one of such regions is planned including sampling and laboratory analysis of different environmental objects, revealing risk factors initiating certain types of oncological pathologies, assessing significance of these factors and their interrelations by the methods of mathematical statistics.
The Mangistau Area of the Republic of Kazakhstan is chosen as the territory under investigation as long as it distinguishes by its high density of technogenic and radiation load with respect to the population. Majority of the population of the area is continuously exposed to technogenic and radiation risk factors. Moreover, due to severe natural climatic conditions (arid climate, semi-desert landscape, absence of rivers and any fresh water sources) and intensive technogenic impact upon the environment, in 1977 the Mangyshlak Peninsula was announced by a WHO session to be a zone of ecological disaster.
Project participant proficiency in the announced fields – six D.Sci. in medicine, etc., twelve M.D. and Ph.D. – will make possible conducting objective analysis and estimation of technogenic and radiation risk factors, carrying out extrapolational prognosis of the Mangistau Area’s population oncological morbidity, as well as working out recommendations to control the state of the environment with a view of reducing technogenic contamination impact upon people’s organism.
Goal of the Project:
Estimation of technogenic and radiation risk factors and extrapolational prognosis of the reasons giving rise to separate types of oncological pathologies of the highly urbanized territory population; working out recommendations on environmental control to reduce intensity of technogenic contamination effect and the risk factor impact upon organism to promote better health of the population.
The ultimate end of the Project is to work out recommendations on environmental control with a view of reducing risk factors and the intensity of technogenic contamination effect upon people’s organism to promote better health of the population living in a zone of intensive technogenic and radiation impact.
In the process of Project carrying out the next results will be achieved as follows:
- Main (intensive and standardized) oncological morbidity rates will be determined in the region for the last 20-years period.
- Investigation parameters characterizing main risk factors initiating certain oncological pathologies of the population will be selected and quantitative data will be obtained characterizing the level of soil, water, and air contamination with main investigation parameters within the revealed objects of contamination and within the human settlements located both in the zones of these object potential effect and in the reference zone (of background technogenic and radiation load).
- “High-risk” group of the population in the selected human settlements will be formed and the somatic state of this population sample will be assessed.
- Environmental object carcinogenicity will be revealed by means of test strains.
- Geographical information system (GIS) database will be created including the cartographic base, the attributive base and the subject map catalogue.
- Analysis and evaluation of technogenic and radiation risk factor impact will be carried out; extrapolation prognosis of oncological morbidity of the population dwelling within the region under investigation will be conducted based on standardized data.
- Recommendations will be worked out making possible revealing and studying main possible risk factors giving rise to certain oncological pathologies of the population living in the zone of intensive technogenic and radiation effect upon the environment.
Scope of activity on the Project:
In the course of Project carrying out radioecological study of several selected objects of investigations will be conducted as well as of the human settlements located both in the zones of these objects potential effect and in a zone of background technogenic and radiation load. During two field seasons medical examination of the population dwelling in these human settlements will be performed and the material for subsequent laboratory study will be collected. About 1500-1800 samples of environmental objects will be analyzed within the Project on the whole.
Project goal and tasks are supposed to be realized through the following stages:
- Developing methodological basis to reveal main risk factors giving rise to separate types of oncological pathologies of the population. Obtaining primary information about state and structure of oncological morbidity in the region and about ecological situation around the objects begetting technogenic and radiation load upon the population according to the results of retrospective investigation and preliminary one in the course of field and laboratory work (determining carcinogenicity/mutagenicity by means of test strains, studying intensive, common, and standardized oncological morbidity rates).
- Analysis of the information gathered in the first stage. Selecting main investigation parameters to make possible more detailed examination of several the most dangerous objects and several human settlements located both in the zone of these factors effect and in a zone of technogenic and radiation background. Elaborating the further investigation strategy. Conducting the complex of field and laboratory examination of the selected parameters of investigation within the selected objects of investigation. Carrying out medical inspection of the specified contingent including performing hematologic and biochemical analysis, cytological study, etc.
- Statistical analysis of the obtained information. Studying the influence of technogenic and radiation contamination and developing recommendations to reveal the risk factors giving rise to oncological pathologies of the population living in the region of intensive technogenic and radiation load upon the environment.
The Projects meets ISTC goals and tasks as far as:
- Project realization is aimed at supporting investigations in the field of environmental protection and control with the view of improving health (health rehabilitation) of the population dwelling in the regions of ecological disaster.
- The scientists and specialists having been previously engaged in development and production of mass destruction weapon can reorient their knowledge and experience to a peaceful activity.
- The Project promotes RK’s scientist and specialist integration into the international scientific community.
- The Project contributes to the encouragement of peaceful applied investigations and solving national problems in the sphere of public health concerning preserving health of the population living in the regions of intensive technogenic and radiation impact.
Role of foreign collaborator:
- information exchange in the course of Project carrying out;
- making commentaries to the regular informational reports drawn up by the Project participants;
- conducting joint workshops, meeting and consultations;
- rendering organizational support to the Project participants in publication results of investigations in international scientific issues.
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