Objectives: Previously published studies on parental occupational exposure to extremely low-frequency magnetic fields (ELF-MF) and risk of acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) and acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) in their offspring were inconsistent. We therefore evaluated this question within the Childhood Leukemia International Consortium.
Methods: We pooled 11 case-control studies including 9723 childhood leukaemia cases and 17 099 controls. Parental occupational ELF-MF exposure was estimated by linking jobs to an ELF-MF job-exposure matrix (JEM). Logistic regression models were used to estimate ORs and 95% CIs in pooled analyses and meta-analyses.
Results: ORs from pooled analyses for paternal ELF-MF exposure >0.2 microtesla (µT) at conception were 1.04 (95% CI 0.95 to 1.13) for ALL and 1.06 (95% CI 0.87 to 1.29) for AML, compared with ≤0.2 µT. Corresponding ORs for maternal ELF-MF exposure during pregnancy were 1.00 (95% CI 0.89 to 1.12) for ALL and 0.85 (95% CI 0.61 to 1.16) for AML. No trends of increasing ORs with increasing exposure level were evident. Furthermore, no associations were observed in the meta-analyses.
Conclusions: In this large international dataset applying a comprehensive quantitative JEM, we did not find any associations between parental occupational ELF-MF exposure and childhood leukaemia.
Keywords: acute lymphoblastic leukemia; acute myeloid leukemia; case-control study; elf-mf; occupation.
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