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Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2013 Dec 1;188(11):1351-7. doi: 10.1164/rccm.201308-1414OC.

Short-term exposure to air pollution and lung function in the Framingham Heart Study.

Author information

1
1 Cardiovascular Epidemiology Research Unit, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts.

Abstract

RATIONALE:

Short-term exposure to ambient air pollution has been associated with lower lung function. Few studies have examined whether these associations are detectable at relatively low levels of pollution within current U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards.

OBJECTIVES:

To examine exposure to ambient air pollutants within EPA standards and lung function in a large cohort study.

METHODS:

We included 3,262 participants of the Framingham Offspring and Third Generation cohorts living within 40 km of the Harvard Supersite monitor in Boston, Massachusetts (5,358 examinations, 1995-2011) who were not current smokers, with previous-day pollutant levels in compliance with EPA standards. We compared lung function (FEV1 and FVC) after previous-day exposure to particulate matter less than 2.5 μm in diameter (PM2.5), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), and ozone (O3) in the "moderate" range of the EPA Air Quality Index to exposure in the "good" range. We also examined linear relationships between moving averages of pollutant concentrations 1, 2, 3, 5, and 7 days before spirometry and lung function.

MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS:

Exposure to pollutant concentrations in the "moderate" range of the EPA Air Quality Index was associated with a 20.1-ml lower FEV1 for PM2.5 (95% confidence interval [CI], -33.4, -6.9), a 30.6-ml lower FEV1 for NO2 (95% CI, -60.9, -0.2), and a 55.7-ml lower FEV1 for O3 (95% CI, -100.7, -10.8) compared with the "good" range. The 1- and 2-day moving averages of PM2.5, NO2, and O3 before testing were negatively associated with FEV1 and FVC.

CONCLUSIONS:

Short-term exposure to PM2.5, NO2, and O3 within current EPA standards was associated with lower lung function in this cohort of adults.

PMID:
24200465
PMCID:
PMC3919078
DOI:
10.1164/rccm.201308-1414OC
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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