Jack Siemiatycki has a PhD in epidemiology and is currently Professor of epidemiology at Université de Montréal. He has held a Canada Research Chair and is currently the guzzo-SRC Chair in environment and Cancer, and is a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences. He has served on over 100 national and international boards and expert advisory bodies for academic and government agencies in Canada, the US and Europe, such as the National Cancer Institute of Canada, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the National Cancer Institute (U.S.), the Institut de Recherche en Santeé publique (France), INSeRM (France), the American College of Epidemiology, IARC and WHO. He has served on the editorial board of the American Journal of epidemiology, and other journals, and has chaired many grant review panels. Most of his research has been in the area of environmental and occupational etiology of cancer. He is known for having developed novel and influential design and exposure assessment methods in the occupational etiology of cancer, and for results from a variety of case-control studies concerning a wide variety of possible environmental carcinogens. Professor Siemiatycki has been an invited speaker at over 150 meetings or seminars throughout the world, including for President Clinton's Cancer Panel, and as a Distinguished Lecturer at the U.S. National Cancer Institute. He has authored or co-authored over 200 peer-reviewed articles, 50 scientific reports, and 150 invited presentations or posters. He was the principal expert witness in the largest ever successful class action lawsuit against the tobacco industry.
Until recently, occupational studies represented one of the most active and fruitful domains of research in cancer epidemiology. Nearly half of known human carcinogens were discovered because of observations or research among workers. It is estimated that in developed countries, as much as 5%-10% of cancers may be attributable to known occupational risk factors. The identification of occupational carcinogens is not only important for occupational health, but many of the identified carcinogens find their way into the general environment. We will review the current state of knowledge regarding occupational cancer. We will explore the causes and consequences of the recent decline in research activity on occupational causes of cancer, and some of the methodological challenges in this area.