Exposure to Traffic Emissions and Fine Particulate Matter and Computed Tomography Measures of the Lung and Airways

This article reports on a study of lower lung function in response to ambient air pollution. The authors used computed tomography (CT) to measure lung volume, mass, density, visual emphysema, airway size, and airway wall area in nonsmoking Framingham, Connecticut residents (n = 2,545, mean age 60.1 years). The authors also considered distance from the participants’ homes to major roads and ambient particulate matter (PM2.5, established from a 2008 spatiotemporal model using satellite data) at each residential address. Analytic models adjusted for other potential confounding factors including age, sex, height, weight, census tract median household value and population density, education, pack-years of smoking, household tobacco exposure, cohort, and date. The authors found that living less than 100 meters from a major roadway was associated with a 108ml (95% CI = 8, 207) higher inspiratory lung volume compared with those participants living greater than 400 meters away from a major roadway. The authors found no convincing associations of proximity to major road or PM2.5 with the other pulmonary CT measures. Additional analyses determined that road proximity was associated with lower lung density among men and higher odds of emphysema among former smokers. The authors discuss the possible indications of the association of road proximity with higher lung volume, including subclinical emphysema, an adverse effect on the small airways, resulting in air trapping, increased inspiratory effort, or a combination of these. They note that airflow obstruction and current or former smoking status are also strongly associated with higher inspiratory lung volume in this population.

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  • Authors:
    • Rice, Mary B
    • Li, Wenyuan
    • Dorans, Kirsten S
    • Wilker, Elissa H
    • Ljungman, Petter
    • Gold, Diane R
    • Schwartz, Joel
    • Koutrakis, Petros
    • Kloog, Itai
    • Araki, Tetsuro
    • Hatabu, Hiroto
    • San Jose Estepar, Raul
    • O'Connor, George T
    • Mittleman, Murray A
    • Washko, George R
  • Publication Date: 2018


  • English

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  • Accession Number: 01706122
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Feb 20 2019 3:22PM