A number of Mini-Symposia will be held as part of the EPICOH 2019 Conference. Descriptions of those confirmed are below.
Please check back regularly as more will be added.
OMEGA-NET (The Network on the Coordination and Harmonisation of European Occupational Cohorts) is a 4-year EU Cost Action that seeks to create a network to optimize and integrate occupational, industrial, and population cohorts, and to provide a foundation for an enhanced evidence base for the identification of health risks and gains related to occupation and employment to foster safe and healthy preventive strategies and policies. The objectives of the OMEGA-NET symposium are to present ongoing work in the network as well as related research projects involving occupational cohort studies, data pooling, and data harmonization.
Advances in neurodegenerative disease epidemiology
Associations between occupational exposures and neurodegenerative disorders (including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases) have not been studied as extensively as cancer and respiratory diseases and their causes remain largely unknown. Due to complicated clinical diagnosis and lack of registries, case ascertainment is a limiting factor when studying neurodegenerative disorders. Case-control studies are best suited for inclusion of incident cases, but prone to recall bias. Studies on neurodegenerative disorders may additionally suffer from lack of recall because of disease characteristics. Cohort studies are free from recall bias and offer opportunities to study associations with occupational exposures. Moreover, baseline blood may be informative about exposures (e.g. lead) well before disease onset. Although occupational information collected in most cohorts is limited, successful studies in cancer and respiratory epidemiology have shown that occupational studies in general populations can be informative. Because each study design has its advantages and disadvantages, neurodegenerative disorders should be looked at more in a range of (occupational) studies to gain better understanding of the aetiology. Furthermore, advanced exposure assessment methods are essential to identify risk factors for neurodegenerative diseases.