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The Health Effects Institute


HEI's website is regularly updated with the latest news and results. Thank you for visiting!

Scientific Program and Registration now available!

HEI 2014 Annual Conference

May 4–6, 2014
Alexandria, VA

Keynote Speaker - Harvey Fineberg, President of the Institute of Medicine
Luncheon Speaker - Michael Walsh, Founding Chair of the International Council on Clean Transportation

HEI publishes report on ultrafine particles in and around diesel school buses – March 2014 NEW
Research Report 180, Characterizing Ultrafine Particles and Other Air Pollutants In and Around School Buses, describes a study that assessed levels of ultrafine particles and other pollutants around diesel engine school buses and identified factors contributing to those levels. Dr. Yifang Zhu at the University of California–Los Angeles, a recipient of HEI’s Walter A. Rosenblith New Investigator Award, measured pollutant levels in and around school buses while driving, while idling, before and after retrofitting with a diesel particle filter and/or oxidation catalyst, and before and after installing an in-cabin filtration system. To download HEI Research Report 180, including a Critique by the HEI Health Review Committee, click here.


HEI Diesel Epidemiology Workshop

March 6th 2014
Boston, MA

Selected Slides now available!

HEI Winter Update now available – February 2014
The Winter 2014 Update newsletter is now available. Read about the recently published ACES Phase 2 Study, which shows dramatic reductions in emissions of particulate matter and nitrogen oxides from the newest heavy-duty diesel engines. The upcoming HEI Annual Conference will take place in the DC area and spotlight science to inform the future. You can also read about HEI’s role in making data on air pollution and health accessible and a new funding opportunity for studies on non-tailpipe and tailpipe emissions near urban roads and in tunnels. Also read about HEI’s new Strategic Plan 2015-2020. To download the newsletter, click here.
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HEI publishes 2013 Annual Report – January 2014
The 2013 Annual Report describes HEI’s unique ability to work with scientists, government, industry, and the environmental community to produce impartial, relevant science that can be trusted for use in often-controversial public policy decisions. The report outlines HEI’s responses to important, tough questions posed by government and industry on several fronts, including whether some sources of particles are more or less toxic, whether new epidemiologic studies on the potential for exhaust from older diesel engines to cause cancer are suitable for risk assessment, and global questions on air quality and health. To view the 2013 Annual Report, please click here.
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HEI issues Winter 2014 Research Agenda – January 2014
HEI has issued its Winter 2014 RFA booklet, which includes RFPA 14-1: Enhancing Near-Road Exposure Assessment Through Characterization of Non-tailpipe and Tailpipe Emissions Near Urban Roads and in Tunnels, and RFA 14-2: Walter A. Rosenblith New Investigator Award. Please check our Funding page for more information and instructions on how to apply.
HEI announces report on emissions characterization of 2010-compliant diesel engines – December 2013
The Phase 2 Report of the Advanced Collaborative Emissions Study (ACES) is now available on the Coordinating Research Council (CRC) Web site, www.crcao.org; it describes work conducted by Dr. Imad Khalek and colleagues at Southwest Research Institute and Desert Research Institute. As part of ACES Phase 2, the investigators conducted detailed emissions characterization of three recent model heavy-duty diesel engines that meet strict U.S. EPA 2010 standards for particulate matter and nitrogen oxide emissions. This important publication represents the fifth report from ACES, a collaborative project between HEI and CRC to provide emissions and health effects testing of new technology diesel engines. Please click on the following links to download free copies: Press Release,PDF Executive Summary,PDF and the CRC Report: ACES Phase 2PDF.
HEI publishes report testing a new statistical approach for air pollution research – November 2013
Research Report 175, New Statistical Approaches to Semiparametric Regression with Application to Air Pollution Research, describes semiparametric methods for epidemiologic investigations of the short-term effects of air pollution on health, intended specifically to improve the reliability of point estimates and confidence intervals. Dr. James Robins of the Harvard School of Public Health and colleagues developed the new methods, used simulations to compare them with other methods, and applied them to a large epidemiologic data set from the National Morbidity, Mortality, and Air Pollution Study (NMMAPS) to assess their effectiveness. The report is accompanied by a short editorial to assist the reader in understanding this study and its contributions to epidemiologic methods for air pollution. To download HEI Research Report 175, including the editorial and a Critique by the HEI Health Review Committee, click here.
HEI reschedules Diesel Epidemiology Workshop for March 6, 2014, Park Plaza Hotel, Boston, MA – NEW DATE & LOCATION
The HEI Diesel Epidemiology Panel PDF will hold its full-day public workshop on March 6th, 2014 in Boston, MA to discuss the National Cancer Institute/National Institute of Occupational Health Diesel Exhaust in Miners Study (DEMS) and studies of U.S. trucking industry employees and their findings on the associations between occupational exposures to diesel and the risks of lung cancer. The goal of the workshop is to provide a thoughtful scientific discussion of these key studies, their strengths and limitations, as input to the HEI Diesel Panel’s ongoing deliberations about use of the studies for quantitative risk assessment. In addition to presentations from the original investigators from each of these studies, the workshop will include talks from investigators who are conducting further analyses of the DEMS data, meta-analyses that include both studies, and perspectives on use of such data for risk assessment by government agencies, and a member of the National Academy of Sciences panel on Environmental Decisions in the Face of Uncertainty. For more information about this public workshop and to register, please click here.
HEI publishes two reports as part of the National Particle Component Toxicity (NPACT) initiative – October 2013
HEI’s NPACT reports describe the most systematic multidisciplinary studies to date to investigate the health effects of particulate matter (PM) components in humans and animal models at locations across the United States where the effects of PM sources and components may differ. Research Report 177, National Particle Component Toxicity (NPACT) Initiative: Integrated Epidemiologic and Toxicologic Studies of the Health Effects of Particulate Matter Components, led by Dr. Morton Lippmann at New York University, and Research Report 178, National Particle Component Toxicity (NPACT) Initiative Report on Cardiovascular Effects, led by Dr. Sverre Vedal at the University of Washington, include three cohort studies of long-term effects and one time-series study of short-term effects in exposed populations, and three toxicology studies in which animals and cell cultures were exposed to particles or mixtures from different airsheds or sources. Each report  includes a Commentary and a Synthesis by the NPACT Review Panel. Please click on the following links to download free copies: Press Release PDF, Executive Summary PDF, HEI Research Report 177 (Lippmann et al.), and HEI Research Report 178 (Vedal et al.).
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Last updated April 14, 2014