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Part Fibre Toxicol. 2013 Nov 26;10(1):59. doi: 10.1186/1743-8977-10-59.

In utero and early life exposure to diesel exhaust air pollution increases adult susceptibility to heart failure in mice.

Author information

1
Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, WA, USA. mtchin@u.washington.edu.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Fine particulate air pollution (PM2.5) is a global health concern, as exposure to PM2.5 has consistently been found to be associated with increased cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. Although adult exposure to traffic related PM2.5, which is largely derived from diesel exhaust (DE), has been associated with increased cardiac hypertrophy, there are limited investigations into the potential effect of in utero and early life exposure on adult susceptibility to heart disease. In this study, we investigate the effect of in utero and early life exposure to DE on adult susceptibility to heart failure.

METHODS:

Female C57BL/6 J mice were exposed to either filtered air (FA) or DE for 3 weeks (≈ 300 μg/m3 PM2.5 for 6 hours/day, 5 days/week) and then introduced to male breeders for timed matings. Female mice were exposed to either FA or DE throughout pregnancy and until offspring were 3 weeks of age. Offspring were then transferred to either FA or DE for an additional 8 weeks of exposure. At 12 weeks of age, male offspring underwent a baseline echocardiographic assessment, followed by a sham or transverse aortic constriction (TAC) surgery to induce pressure overload. Following sacrifice three weeks post surgery, ventricles were processed for histology to assess myocardial fibrosis and individual cardiomyocyte hypertrophy. mRNA from lung tissue was isolated to measure expression of inflammatory cytokines IL6 and TNFα.

RESULTS:

We observed that mice exposed to DE during in utero and early life development have significantly increased susceptibility to cardiac hypertrophy, systolic failure, myocardial fibrosis, and pulmonary congestion following TAC surgery compared to FA control, or adult DE exposed mice. In utero and early life DE exposure also strongly modified the inflammatory cytokine response in the adult lung.

CONCLUSIONS:

We conclude that exposure to diesel exhaust air pollution during in utero and early life development in mice increases adult susceptibility to heart failure. The results of this study may imply that the effects of air pollution on cardiovascular disease in human populations may be strongly mediated through a 'fetal origins' of adult disease pathway. Further investigations on this potential pathway of disease are warranted.

PMID:
24279743
PMCID:
PMC3902482
DOI:
10.1186/1743-8977-10-59
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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