Certain health conditions and diseases including menopause, pregnancy, ovarian, cervical cancer, breast cancer; certain autoimmune diseases, endometriosis, and osteoporosis occur only in women. A number of these may be environmentally mediated. Data from a recent study on urban air pollution suggest that women have a greater risk of developing fatal coronary heart disease as a result of long-term exposure to airborne particles than their male counterparts. Research conducted by NIEHS-supported scientists shows that nighttime exposure to artificial light stimulates the growth of human breast tumors, a finding that may explain why female night shift workers have higher rates of breast cancer than the general population. In 1994, NIEHS researchers isolated a tumor-suppressor gene, BRCA1, which is known to play a critical role in the development of hereditary breast and ovarian cancer. Still other health conditions may affect women differently or in disproportionate rates than men.
Health Studies & Clinical Trials
What NIEHS is Doing on Women's Health