Estimate of the wavelength dependency of ultraviolet carcinogenesis in humans and its relevance to the risk assessment of a stratospheric ozone depletion

Health Phys. 1994 Oct;67(4):319-25. doi: 10.1097/00004032-199410000-00001.


The wavelength dependency of carcinogenesis is an important factor in risk assessments pertaining to sources of ultraviolet radiation, the most important of which is the sun. This wavelength dependency cannot be measured directly in humans, but it has been measured in hairless mice, and represented in an action spectrum. An estimate of the action spectrum for humans can be produced by correcting for differences in epidermal transmission between mice and humans. This carcinogenic action spectrum for humans resembles the action spectrum for ultraviolet-induced erythema (sunburn), and results in small adjustments of earlier estimates of the effects of a stratospheric ozone depletion on skin cancer incidences.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Atmosphere
  • Epidermis / radiation effects*
  • Geography
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Neoplasms, Radiation-Induced*
  • Ozone
  • Spectrum Analysis
  • Sunburn / etiology
  • Ultraviolet Rays


  • Ozone