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  • Writer's pictureKirk Hartley

Taconite, 82 Mesotheliomas, and Ongoing Studies

Researchers continue to investigate why so many mesotheliomas are showing up in taconite miners. The Taconite Workers Health Study is online here, and is ongoing in Minnesota for workers from the Minnesota mountain ranges. The story is here from John Myers of the Duluth News Tribune.

Here are key excerpts from the article:

"The number of Iron Rangers who died of mesothelioma has reached 82, up from 63 when last reported by state health officials in 2010.

Health officials say they found the additional cases by checking death records in other states for former Iron Range residents who moved out of Minnesota.

That was the report Monday from the University of Minnesota team that is heading the long-term Taconite Workers Health Study. The study, which started in 2008, could be completed as early as mid-2012.

Dr. Jeffrey Mandel, an associate professor at the University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health and lead researcher in the Iron Range study, said a “back-of-the-envelope” analysis shows the mesothelioma rate is considerably higher than it should be.

“But we are still doing the analysis to find out how much so,” Mandel said in a telephone news conference."

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