Particulate Matter

This page has a list of publications and news articles related to Air Pollution - Particulate Matter. Find more information about our research on Air Pollution.

Perspectives 1
Health Effects Institute
June 2001

Perspectives 1 is the first of a series produced by the HEI Health Review Committee to integrate findings across several HEI studies or entire research programs. The intent is to describe and interpret results bearing on important and timely issues for a broad audience in terested in environmental health.

Research Report 101
Per Gerde
Bruce A Muggenburg
Margot Lundborg
Yohannes Tesfaigzi
Alan R Dahl
April 2001

Dr. Gerde and colleagues at the Lovelace Respiratory Research Institute examined the effects of organic compounds in diesel exhaust such as genotoxic polynuclear aromatic compounds (PAHs). The investigators removed most of the organic compounds from diesel exhaust particles and bound radioactive Benzo[a]pyrene (BaP), a type of PAH is known to cause cancer in laboratory animals, to them. They exposed the lower respiratory tract of three dogs to the particles and measured the levels of particle-bound BaP and free BaP released from particles in the peripheral region of the lungs.

Research Report 99
Harvey Checkoway
Drew Levy
Lianne Sheppard
Joel D Kaufman
Jane Koenig
David Siscovick
December 2000

Dr Checkoway and colleagues at the University of Washington tested the primary hypothesis that increases in daily fine particle levels were related to increased risk of out-of-hospital sudden cardiac arrest. Sudden cardiac arrest and questionnaire data, and exposure data were obtained from the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency (Seattle WA). The investigators used a case-crossover study design; for each case of sudden cardiac arrest, a time period when the person was disease free was selected as a matched "referent" period.

Research Report 98
H-Erich Wichmann
Claudia Spix
Thomas Tuch
Gabriele Wölke
Annette Peters
Joachim Heinrich
Wolfgang Kreyling
Joachim Heyder
November 2000

Dr H-Erich Wichmann and colleagues at the National Research Center for Environment and Health in Germany prospectively studied the association of daily mortality data with the number and mass concentrations of ultrafine and fine particles in Erfurt, Germany. Concentrations were measured near a road and a time-series approach was used to look at short-term changes in particle concentration and concurrent deaths due to cardiovascular and respiratory causes over a period of 3.5 years.

Research Report 97
Mark S Goldberg
John C Bailar III
Richard T Burnett
Jeffrey R Brook
Robyn Tamblyn
Yvette Bonvalot
Pierre Ernst
Kenneth M Flegel
Ravinder K Singh
Marie-France Valois
October 2000

Dr. Mark Goldberg and his colleagues at McGill University conducted a time-series study in Montreal using available data from the Quebec Health Insurance Plan and mortality and air pollution data to better the understanding of the mortality-particulate association. Because of the comprehensive nature of this health insurance database, the investigators were able to link individual deaths in Montreal to medical information up to 5 years before death.

Research Report 95
Morton Lippmann
Kazuhiko Ito
Arthur Nádas
Richard T Burnett
August 2000

Dr Morton Lippmann and colleagues at the New York University School of Medicine attempted to identify and characterize components of PM and other air pollution mixtures that were associated with excess daily deaths and elderly hospital admissions in and around the area of Detroit, Michigan. Using publicly available data from 1985-1990 and 1992-1994, the investigators used statistical models to weigh the strength of one pollutant or two pollutants concurrently.

Research Report 94-II
Jonathan M Samet
Scott L Zeger
Francesca Dominici
Frank Curriero
Ivan Coursac
Douglas W Dockery
Joel Schwartz
Antonella Zanobetti
June 2000

The National Morbidity, Mortality, and Air Pollution Study (NMMAPS) was designed to select multiple locations based on the specific criteria of population size and availability of PM10 data from the US Environmental Protection Agency's Aerometric Information Retrieval System (AIRS) database, and to apply the same statistical procedures to all locations. Dr Jonathan Samet and his colleagues Johns Hopkins University conducted a time-series study of mortality effects in large US cities representing various levels of PM10 and gaseous pollutants.

Research Report 94-I
Jonathan M Samet
Francesca Dominici
Scott L Zeger
Joel Schwartz
Douglas W Dockery
June 2000

In an effort to address the uncertainties regarding the association between PM and daily mortality, and to determine the effects of other pollutants on this association, HEI funded the National Morbidity, Mortality, and Air Pollution Study (NMMAPS). Dr Jonathan Samet and his colleagues at Johns Hopkins University, in collaboration with investigators at Harvard University, conducted this time-series study in large cities across the US where levels of PM and gaseous pollutants were varied.

Research Report 93
Terry Gordon
Christine Nadziejko
Lung Chi Chen
Richard B Schlesinger
April 2000

Dr Terry Gordon and colleagues at the New York University School of Medicine conducted an exploratory study to test the effects of exposure to PM derived from New York City air on the rodent cardiopulmonary system. They hypothesized that PM would have greater, possibly fatal, effects in animals with compromised cardiopulmonary function than in normal animals. Gordon and colleagues exposed animals for up to 6 hours to concentrated particles that ranged from approximately 150 to 900 µg/m3.

Research Report 91
John J Godleski
Richard L Verrier
Petros Koutrakis
Paul J Catalano
February 2000

Dr John Godleski and colleagues at Harvard School of Public Health conducted an exploratory study to test the effects of particulate matter exposure in dogs, which share many features of the human cardiovascular system. The investigators hypothesized that particulate matter might affect the animals' cardiac function, leading to arrhythmia, and might induce inflammatory responses and changes in pulmonary mechanical measurements. Twelve dogs were exposed to concentrated ambient particles (CAPs) that were 30 times their level in ambient Boston air.