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J Air Waste Manag Assoc. 2009 Apr;59(4):392-404.

Associations between personal, indoor, and residential outdoor pollutant concentrations: implications for exposure assessment to size-fractionated particulate matter.

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University of Southern California, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Los Angeles, CA 90089, USA.


The physical and chemical characteristics of indoor, outdoor, and personal quasi-ultrafine (<0.25 microm)-, accumulation (0.25-2.5 microm)-, and coarse (2.5-10 microm)-mode particles were studied at four different retirement communities in southern California between 2005 and 2007. Linear mixed-effects models and Spearman's correlation coefficients were then used to elucidate the relationships among size-segregated particulate matter (PM) levels, their particle components, and gaseous co-pollutants. Seasonal and spatial differences in the concentrations of all measured species were evaluated at all sites on the basis of P values for product terms. Outdoor quasi-ultrafine (UF) and, to a lesser extent, accumulation-mode particles were the two fractions that best correlated with outdoor concentrations of carbon monoxide (CO), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), nitrogen oxides (NOx; during both phases of the study), and ozone (O3; only during the warmer months). Outdoor and indoor concentrations of CO, NO2, and NOx were more positively correlated to personal quasi-UF particles than larger size fractions. Despite these findings, it seems unlikely that these gaseous co-pollutants could confound epidemiologic associations between quasi-UF particles and adverse health effects. Overall, measured gaseous co-pollutants were weak surrogates of personal exposure to accumulation-mode PM, at least for subjects with similar exposure profiles and living in similar urban locations. Indoor sources were not significant contributors to personal exposure of accumulation and quasi-UF PM, which is predominantly influenced by primary emitted pollutants of outdoor origin. Correlations between personal coarse-mode PM and both outdoor and indoor gaseous co-pollutant concentrations were weak at all sites and during all seasons.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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