Quantifying the Cancer Incidence Burden due to Lifestyle and Environment in Canada – The Canadian Population Attributable Risk of Cancer Project (ComPARe)

Principal Investigator: Dr. Darren Brenner, Dr. Christine Friedenreich

Affiliation: Department of Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention Research, CancerControl Alberta, Alberta Health Services

Start Year: 2014

Despite well-established associations between modifiable lifestyle and environmental risk factors and cancer risk, reductions in these risk exposures have not produced declines in cancer incidence in Canada. This lack of change could be due to inadequate awareness among Canadians about the modifiable causes of cancer, and population-based cancer prevention strategies based on outdated information. To improve on this, we are conducting a study that will estimate the number of cancer cases, now and in the future, that could potentially be prevented through changes in modifiable lifestyle and environmental risk factors associated with cancer. These risk factors include tobacco smoking, dietary intake, physical activity level, body weight, environmental factors, infectious diseases and hormonal therapies. This study will produce the most comprehensive dataset of its kind ever in Canada based on the most up-to-date epidemiologic evidence of cancer risk and contemporary exposure prevalence data. This information will be invaluable for a broad range of knowledge users including policy makers, to target the
exposures and cancer prevention interventions with the greatest potential for population-level impact.