Air Pollution

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Research Report 153
James J Schauer
Brian J Majestic
Rebecca J Sheesley
Martin M Shafer
Jeffrey T DeMinter
Mark Mieritz
December 2010

This report investigates methods with the high sensitivity and low limits of detection needed to analyze a wide range of chemical species in particulate matter collected with personal samplers. Dr. Schauer and colleagues developed sensitive methods to detect trace metals, nonpolar organic compounds, and polar organic compounds in personal samples collected in exposure studies. Methods used in this study are of interest to researchers seeking to gain greater insight into the relationships between the components of inhalable particulates and their health effects.

Research Report 154
Haidong Kan
et al.
Zhengmin Qian
et al.
Nuntavarn Vichit-Vadakan
et al.
Chit-Ming Wong
et al.
November 2010

This report describes the first set of coordinated time-series studies ever undertaken in Asian cities: four time-series studies of the health effects of air pollution in Bangkok, Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Wuhan. These studies were intended to help bridge the gaps between studies conducted in different locations around the globe.

Communication 12
Scott L Zeger
Aidan McDermott
Francesca Dominici
Roger D Peng
Jonathan Samet
October 2006

HEI Communication 12 describes a project by Dr Scott Zeger and colleagues at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health that was funded by HEI to make data and software from the National Morbidity, Mortality, and Air Pollution Study (NMMAPS) available to the wider research and policy communities. This Communication contains the Project Report, which describes the Internet-Based Health and Air Pollution Surveillance System (iHAPSS), along with Comments from some members of the HEI Health Research and Review Committees and other experts who had used the data.

Research Report 124
Annette Peters
et al.
Douglas W Dockery
et al.
June 2005

This report contains two studies, by Drs. Annette Peters and Douglas Dockery. Dr. Peters and her colleagues evaluated the association between nonfatal myocardial infarction (MI) and exposure to particulate matter just prior to the event. She asked 691 patients in hospitals in Augsburg, Germany who survived an MI to provide hourly details about their activities 4 days before MI onset. The investigators used a case-crossover analysis to determine whether exposure to pollutants was associated with onset of MI. Dr. Dockery and colleagues assessed the correlation between short-term increases in ambient concentrations of particulate matter and the risk of possibly life-threatening arrhythmias in patients with implanted cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs). The investigators studied 195 patients from Boston, MA who had either single or dual-chamber ICD's and used logistic regression models to determine whether exposure to air pollutants was associated with arrhythmias.

Research Report 123
Francesca Dominici
December 2004

This report describes a study funded under the Walter A. Rosenblith New Investigator Award. Dr Francesca Dominici and colleagues at Johns Hopkins University developed more flexible methods and statistical models for the National Morbidity, Mortality, and Air Pollution Study database.

Research Report 122
Alison S Geyh
Susanne Hering
Nathan Kreisberg
Walter John
November 2004

Dr Alison S Geyh and colleagues at Johns Hopkins University evaluated the personal and microenvironmental aerosol speciation sampler (PMASS) prototype developed by Dr. Susanne Hering with HEI funding (HEI Research Report 114). The precision and accuracy of the prototype, which measures PM2.5 mass, elemental and organic carbon, sulfate, and nitrate, was evaluated in two locations with different PM composition. Baltimore, Maryland (outdoors), and Fresno, California (indoors). Geyh and colleagues set a target of 10% precision and 10% accuracy for all species measured.

Research Report 121
Maire SA Heikkinen
Yair Hazi
Hai Gao
Paul Peters
Morton Lippmann
September 2004

Dr. Beverly Cohen and her colleagues at New York University School of Medicine tested the performance of iron nanofilms to collect and measure sulfuric acid particles of different sizes under a variety of temperature and humidity conditions. The iron nanofilm detector is a thin iron-coated silicon chip. Particles would react with the iron, creating an elevated site or bump on the film surface, which can be visualized using an atomic force microscope.

Special Report 15
Health Effects Institute
April 2004

A Special Report by the HEI International Scientific Oversight Committee of HEI Public Health and Air Pollution in Asia (PAPA) Program (a program of the Clean Air Initiative for Asian Cities). This first publication to come from HEI's PAPA Program was undertaken to help inform the Clean Air Initiative for Asian Cities. This special report has identified and summarized more than 135 studies of air pollution and health conducted across Asia. In addition, it critically reviews for the first time a key subset of these studies: 28 studies of daily mortality. The report is a valuable resource for policy makers in Asia and beyond.

Research Report 119
Robert A Yokel
Janelle S Crossgrove
January 2004

Drs. Yokel and Crossgrove at the University of Kentucky Medical Center studied the mechanisms by which manganese enters and leaves the brain across the blood–brain barrier and, in particular, whether transporter molecules are involved. The investigators used in vivo brain perfusion in rats as well as in vitro tests in several cell lines to assess specific characteristics of manganese transport, such as pH and energy dependence. Manganese transport rates were compared with those of sucrose and dextran, which do not easily cross the blood–brain barrier.

Special Report
Health Effects Institute
May 2003

Over the past decade, time-series studies conducted in many cities have contributed information about the association between daily changes in concentrations of airborne particulate matter (PM) and daily morbidity and mortality. In 2002, however, investigators at Johns Hopkins University and at Health Canada identified issues in the statistical model used in the majority of time-series studies. This HEI Special Report details attempts to address several questions raised by these discoveries.