Ambient air pollutants and breast cancer stage in Tehran, Iran

Zahra Khorrami, Mohsen Pourkhosravani, Ali Karamoozian, Ali Jafari-Khounigh, Mohammad Esmaeil Akbari, Maysam Rezapour, Reihaneh Khorrami, Seyed Mahmood Taghavi-Shahri, Heresh Amini, Koorosh Etemad, Narges Khanjani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study aimed to examine the impacts of single and multiple air pollutants (AP) on the severity of breast cancer (BC). Data of 1148 diagnosed BC cases (2008–2016) were obtained from the Cancer Research Center and private oncologist offices in Tehran, Iran. Ambient PM10, SO2, NO, NO2, NOX, benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, m-xylene, p-xylene, o-xylene, and BTEX data were obtained from previously developed land use regression models. Associations between pollutants and stage of BC were assessed by multinomial logistic regression models. An increase of 10 μg/m3 in ethylbenzene, o-xylene, m-xylene, and 10 ppb of NO corresponded to 10.41 (95% CI 1.32–82.41), 4.07 (1.46–11.33), 2.89 (1.08–7.73) and 1.08 (1.00–1.15) increase in the odds of stage I versus non-invasive BC, respectively. Benzene (OR, odds ratio = 1.16, 95% CI 1.01–1.33) and o-xylene (OR = 1.18, 1.02–1.38) were associated with increased odds of incidence of BC stages III & IV versus non-invasive stages. BC stage I and stage III&IV in women living in low SES areas was associated with significantly higher levels of benzene, ethylbenzene, o-xylene, and m-xylene. The highest multiple-air-pollutants quartile was associated with a higher odds of stage I BC (OR = 3.16) in patients under 50 years old. This study provides evidence that exposure to AP is associated with increased BC stage at diagnosis, especially under premenopause age.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3873
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2024


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