Linwei Tian, PhD
School of Public Health, The University of Hong Kong, China
Dr. Tian is an environmental epidemiologist with a focus on air pollution and health. He is conducting field epidemiology and laboratory work on indoor air pollution and lung cancer in Xuan Wei County, which has the highest lung cancer rates among women in China. Using spatial analysis of coal use patterns and lung cancer rates in hundreds of villages, he has raised the hypothesis that crystalline silica (quartz) in coal smoke is an important risk factor in the lung cancer epidemic in rural Xuan Wei. Currently he is working to quantify quartz and other carcinogens in coal smoke and to determine whether an exposure-response relationship can be found. Should such a linkage be found he would advocate a ban of certain types of toxic coals for residential use in China. Further, he would identify reference carcinogenic materials in coal smoke for further laboratory carcinogenesis studies. Urbanized Hong Kong provides another unique setting to study air pollution and health. Dr. Tian has been conducting epidemiological studies in order to inform risk-based air quality control policies.