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Int J Hyg Environ Health. 2018 Jan;221(1):41-47. doi: 10.1016/j.ijheh.2017.10.001. Epub 2017 Oct 7.

Particulate matter air pollution, physical activity and systemic inflammation in Taiwanese adults.

Author information

1
Jockey Club School of Public Health and Primary Care, the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China.
2
Institute for Risk Assessment Sciences, Utrecht University, the Netherlands.
3
Institute of Sociology, Academia Sinica, Taiwan; MJ Health Research Foundation, MJ Group, Taiwan.
4
Research Center for Humanities and Social Sciences, Academia Sinica, Taiwan.
5
MJ Health Research Foundation, MJ Group, Taiwan.
6
Division of Environment and Sustainability, the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong, China.
7
Division of Environment and Sustainability, the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong, China; Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong, China.
8
Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Monash University, Australia.
9
Department of Sociology, the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China.
10
Jockey Club School of Public Health and Primary Care, the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China; Shenzhen Research Institute of the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shenzhen, China. Electronic address: xqlao@cuhk.edu.hk.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The protective effects of physical activity (PA) against chronic disease can be partially ascribed to its anti-inflammatory effects. On the other hand, long-term exposure to particulate matter with an aerodynamic diameter less than 2.5μm (PM2.5) may induce systemic inflammation.

OBJECTIVE:

To investigate the joint effects of habitual PA and long-term exposure to PM2.5 on systemic inflammation in a large cohort of Taiwanese adults.

METHODS:

We studied 359,067 adult participants from a cohort consisting of Taiwanese residents who participated in a standard medical examination program from 2001 to 2014. Peripheral white blood cell (WBC) and differential counts were measured as indicators of systemic inflammation. Two-year average concentration of PM2.5 was estimated at each participant's address using a satellite-based spatio-temporal model. Habitual PA level was assessed by questionnaire (inactive, low, moderate and high). Mixed-effects linear regression model was used to examine the associations of WBC counts with PM2.5 and PA.

RESULTS:

Compared with inactive participants, those with low, moderate or high PA levels had 0.36% [95% confidence interval (CI): 0.31%, 0.41%], 0.70% (95%CI: 0.65%, 0.76%) and 1.16% (95%CI: 1.11%, 1.22%) lower WBC counts, respectively, after adjusting for PM2.5 exposure and a wide range of confounders. Long-term PM2.5 exposure was associated with increased WBC counts at all PA levels. Analyses for differential counts generated similar results. No significant interaction was observed between PA and PM2.5 exposure (P for interaction=0.59).

CONCLUSIONS:

Habitual PA was associated with statistically significant lower markers of systemic inflammation across different levels of PM2.5. Effects of PA and PM2.5 exposure on systemic inflammation are independent.

KEYWORDS:

Particulate matter; Physical activity; Systemic inflammation; White blood cell

PMID:
29030094
DOI:
10.1016/j.ijheh.2017.10.001
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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