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Posted by on in Centers of Excellence
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Cardno ChemRisk Scientists Publish a New Study on Cosmetic Talc

We are pleased to share with you an article our colleagues recently published in Inhalation Toxicology, titled “Cosmetic talc as a risk factor for pleural mesothelioma: a weight of evidence evaluation of the epidemiology.

In this paper, the authors pooled all of the mesothelioma studies of cosmetic talc miners and determined that, if in fact mesothelioma incidence had been significantly increased in these cohorts, it would have been detected using standard statistical techniques.  No increase at all was observed, and in fact there wasn’t a single reported case of mesothelioma in any cohort. 

The impetus for this study was a statement by EPA (in the early 1990’s) that the existing data were not sufficiently powerful to assess whether the miners were at risk.  Our analysis, which relies primarily on findings published since that time shows that there is now sufficient power to make such a determination.  As described in the paper, our findings are consistent with the fact that no pleural mesotheliomas have been observed in patients treated with very high doses of cosmetic talc placed directly in the pleura (“pluerodesis”).

Because miners were exposed to cosmetic talc at levels much higher than those associated with the use of cosmetic talc products, we conclude this is evidence that product use is highly unlikely to be a risk factor for mesothelioma.

If you have any questions or would like further information, please contact Dr. Stacey Benson.
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Ms. Melanie Nembhard is an Associate Health Scientist with Cardno ChemRisk in the San Francisco, CA office. She earned her MSPH in Occupational and Environmental Hygiene from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She also holds two certificates from Johns Hopkins, the Risk Sciences and Public Policy Certificate and the Population and Health Certificate. Ms. Nembhard’s principal areas of training and expertise include industrial hygiene and risk assessment. Since joining Cardno ChemRisk, she has provided litigation support for cases related to asbestos, benzene, butadiene, diacetyl, worker safety, welding, sunscreen, dermal exposures to various chemicals, and inhalation irritants. Additionally, she has participated in baseline exposure assessments at multiple oil refineries regarding occupational and environmental exposures to various chemical and physical agents, including particulates, volatile organic compounds, and noise.