Dr. Laden’s research focuses on the environmental epidemiology of cancer and respiratory disease. She has been working with the Nurses’ Health Study, a large prospective cohort of U.S. women, to examine possible environmental risk factors (including exposures to PCBs and the pesticide DDT) of breast cancer and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. In the Harvard Six Cities Study she has studied the associations of specific sources of particulate air pollution with mortality.
Dr. Laden is also involved in two studies examining the relationship of exposure to diesel exhaust with lung cancer and other respiratory mortality. The first is a continuation of follow-up of the US Railroad Workers Study. The second is a retrospective epidemiologic study among unionized trucking industry workers. One of the major aims of the trucking study is to improve methods of defining past exposures to diesel exhaust using detailed work history records, extensive exposure monitoring or current working conditions, and historical records.