Occupational physical activity and lung cancer risk

Principal Investigator: Dr. Vikki Ho

Affiliation: Centre de recherche du centre hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal

Start Year: 2017

Being physically active has been shown to reduce the risk of some cancers. There are different types of physical activity, including activity at work and recreational activities. Participation in recreational activities has been shown to reduce lung cancer risk. However, the role of physical activity at work in affecting the development of lung cancer is not well-established. In fact, some studies have found that people who have physically demanding jobs also have a higher risk of lung cancer. As people spend many hours at work and some jobs are very physically demanding, new studies are needed to fully understand the role of physical activity at work on lung cancer development. In this research, we will examine how lung cancer risk is associated with physical activity levels at work. Our research will be based in the Canadian Partnership for Tomorrow’s Health. Our research will include all men and women who were newly diagnosed with lung cancer since the study began. For comparison, we will also select a sub-group of people, who did not have a cancer at the beginning of the study. The interview asked detailed questions on the longest-held job for all participants. Using this information, we will compare activity levels in the longest-held job between those who were diagnosed with lung cancer and those who remained cancer-free. This study offers a valuable opportunity to examine, in a short time frame and at low cost, whether physical activity at work plays an important role in lung cancer development.