Research Reports

HEI’s mission is to provide credible science to support environmental regulations and other policy decisions. The results of each HEI-funded project undergo peer-review by outside scientists and the Health Review Committee. The HEI Research Reports contain the Investigator’s Report and the Review Committee’s evaluation of the study, summarized in a Commentary or short Critique.
Research Report 141
Robert L Lux
C Arden Pope III
May 2009

This report describes a study to explore novel electrocardiogram (ECG) parameters to improve our understanding of how air pollution may affect cardiovascular health. Drs. Robert Lux and Arden Pope used ECGs obtained in a previous study by Dr. Pope that found a decrease in heart rate variability associated with increased levels of particulate matter, and analyzed them for changes in novel parameters of another important potential change - ventricular repolarization.

Research Report 139
Bert Brunekreef
Rob Beelen
Gerard Hoek
Leo Schouten
Sandra Bausch-Goldbohm
Paul Fischer
Ben Armstrong
Edward Hughes
Michael Jerrett
Piet van den Brandt
March 2009

Research Report 139 describes a study in the Netherlands using data from the ongoing Netherlands Cohort Study (NLCS) on diet and cancer. The study is one of the first to systematically assess longer term exposure and mortality in a well characterized European population; it followed a pilot study of 5000 adults randomly selected from the NLCS cohort conducted by the same team of investigators. For the current study, Dr.

Research Report 137
Annette Peters
Susanne Breitner
Josef Cyrys
Matthias Stölzel
Mike Pitz
Gabriele Wölke
Joachim Heinrich
Wolfgang Kreyling
Helmut Küchenhoff
H-Erich Wichmann
February 2009

Research Report 137, The Influence of Improved Air Quality on Mortality Risks in Erfurt, Germany, is the first study to come out of HEI's program on the health impact of regulatory and other actions to improve air quality, known as accountability. The report describes sweeping changes in the economy and energy use that occurred in the former East Germany after the 1990 reunification as a result of stricter environmental controls and modernization of industry, transportation, and household heating. Dr.

Research Report 138
Junfeng (Jim) Zhang
James E McCreanor
Paul Cullinan
Kian Fan Chung
Pamela Ohman-Strickland
In-Kyu Han
Lars Järup
Mark J Nieuwenhuijsen
February 2009

Research Report 138, Health Effects of Real-World Exposure to Diesel Exhaust in Persons with Asthma, is one part of HEI's larger program on the role of particles in exacerbating asthma and other allergic diseases. This report describes a study to evaluate how inhaling air with a high concentration of diesel exhaust from vehicular traffic while walking on a busy street in Central London might affect people who had either mild or moderate asthma. Dr.

Research Report 136
Ian M Kennedy
Dennis Wilson
Abdul I Barakat
January 2009

Research Report 136, Uptake and Inflammatory Effects of Nanoparticles in a Human Vascular Endothelial Cell Line, is one part of HEI's larger program on the health effects of particulate matter and its various components. This report describes a one-year study to evaluate which physicochemical characteristics of metal nanoparticles may contribute to their toxicity.

Research Report 135
Kent E Pinkerton
Yamei Zhou
Caiyun Zhong
Kevin R Smith
Stephen V Teague
Ian M Kennedy
Margaret G Ménache
October 2008

Research Report 135 describes a study to determine whether the biologic response to inhaled ultrafine particles depends on particle composition. Neonatal and young adult rats were exposed to laboratory-generated ultrafine metal particles, either alone or in combination with soot, and their lungs examined for oxidative stress, inflammation, and injury.

Research Report 134
Jonathan Grigg
Neeta Kulkarni
Nevil Pierse
Lesley Rushton
Christopher O'Callaghan
Andrew Rutman
June 2008

Research Report 134 describes a study that evaluated whether there was an association between particles detectable in the airways of healthy children and a) estimates of local, traffic-derived PM10 at the children's home addresses or b) their lung function. Dr. Jonathan Grigg and colleagues recruited 116 healthy children aged 8 to 15 years who lived in Leicester, UK. In addition to modeling each child's exposure, the investigators measured lung function and evaluated induced sputum for particles in airway macrophages and markers of inflammation.

Research Report 130-II
Barbara J Turpin
Clifford P Weisel
Maria T Morandi
Steven Colome
Thomas Stock
Steven Eisenreich
Brian Buckley
et al.
August 2007
Topics: 

The RIOPA project comprised three studies, one funded by the Mickey Leland National Urban Air Toxics Research Center (NUATRC) and two funded by HEI, that investigated seasonal concentrations of 16 VOCs, 10 carbonyls, and PM2.5 in homes in Los Angeles CA, Houston TX, and Elizabeth NJ. The project was jointly funded and reviewed by a Special Review Panel of the two organizations. It generated a rich database on concentrations of air toxics and PM2.5 in the personal breathing zone of 100 adults in each city as well as inside and outside their homes.

Research Report 132
Elizabeth Delzell
Nalini Sathiakumar
John Graff
Maurizio Macaluso
George Maldonado
Robert Matthew
August 2006
Topics: 

This study by Dr. Elizabeth Delzell and colleagues is the first major update of the most extensive human study to date of potential carcinogenic effects of 1,3-butadiene (BD). The earlier study investigated mortality among the largest occupational group exposed to BD: 18,000 men employed in the styrene-butadiene rubber (SBR) industry between 1944 and 1991. In the current study, these workers were followed for an additional 7 years and the effects of exposure to other compounds were evaluated.

Research Report 131
Petros Koutrakis
Helen H Suh
Jeremy A Sarnat
Kathleen Ward Brown
Brent A Coull
Joel Schwartz
December 2005

Dr. Koutrakis and his colleagues assessed the correlations between personal exposure to PM2.5 and gaseous copollutants and compare these measurements with those taken at central-site monitors. Three groups of possibly susceptible individuals (children, seniors, and individuals with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) were recruited in two cities (Boston and Baltimore) in two seasons (summer and winter).