2003 Progress Report: Epidemiologic Study of Particulate Matter and Cardiopulmonary Mortality

EPA Grant Number: R827355C001
Subproject: this is subproject number 001 , established and managed by the Center Director under grant R827355
(EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).

Center: Airborne PM - Northwest Research Center for Particulate Air Pollution and Health
Center Director: Koenig, Jane Q.
Title: Epidemiologic Study of Particulate Matter and Cardiopulmonary Mortality
Investigators: Kaufman, Joel D. , Sheppard, Lianne (Elizabeth) A. , Karr, Catharine J. , Koenig, Jane Q. , Schreuder, Astrid , Siscovick, David , Checkoway, Harvey , Sullivan, Jeff , Shepherd, Kristine
Current Investigators: Kaufman, Joel D. , Sheppard, Lianne (Elizabeth) A. , Karr, Catharine J. , Schreuder, Astrid , Siscovick, David , Sullivan, Jeff , Shepherd, Kristine , Miller, Kristine , Ishikawa, Naomi
Institution: University of Washington
EPA Project Officer: Chung, Serena
Project Period: June 1, 1999 through May 31, 2004 (Extended to May 31, 2006)
Project Period Covered by this Report: June 1, 2003 through May 31, 2004
Project Amount: Refer to main center abstract for funding details.
RFA: Airborne Particulate Matter (PM) Centers (1999) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Air Quality and Air Toxics , Particulate Matter , Air


The objective of Years 1-3 of the project was to investigate associations between ambient particulate matter (PM) exposure and cardiopulmonary disease risks. The objectives were addressed mainly through the use of case-crossover study designs. In Years 4-6 of the project, the epidemiology project objectives are expanded to consider myocardial infarction (MI) onset in Seattle and PM-health outcomes in multicity settings.

Progress Summary:

Four accomplishments can be cited: (1) a study of associations between chronic air pollution exposure and cystic fibrosis (CF); (2) results from a study of the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) cohort; (3) an analysis of the relationship between MI and air pollution in Seattle; and (4) a pending new grant.

Associations Between Air Pollution Exposure and Exacerbations of CF

Our analysis found a strong association between severity of CF and air pollution in a multicity study. The results were published in April 2004.

Preliminary Results From the WHI Cohort

Background . PM air pollution has been associated with cardiovascular disease (CVD) in studies of long-term exposure; however, prior studies have had limited geographical variability and individual-level information on prior medical history and did not assess nonfatal events. We examined the association of long-term exposure to PM with CVD in the WHI observational prospective cohort study.

Methods. We assigned air pollution exposures to 66,801 postmenopausal U.S. women with no history of CVD, using year 2000 average exposure data from the nearest representative PM2.5 monitor within 30 miles of the subjects’ residential ZIP code. Monitor characteristics and average annual pollutant concentrations were obtained from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency AirData database. Median followup was 6 years, including events through August 2003. Events were ascertained by review of hospital and medical records or death certificates with local adjudication according to standardized criteria. There were 421 fatal CVD events and 3,061 incident/nonfatal CVD events. Specific events included coronary heart disease deaths: 162, cerebrovascular deaths: 145, CVD deaths: 114, nonfatal MI: 597, angina: 854, revascularization: 165, coronary artery disease: 148, congestive heart failure: 382, stroke: 570, and transient ischemic attack: 345. For the first incident since enrollment, we calculated hazard ratios per 10-µg/m 3 increment of annual average PM2.5 exposure using Cox proportional hazards regression, adjusting for age, smoking status, years smoked, cigarettes per day, diabetes, hypertension, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, body mass index, and elevated cholesterol.

Results . After adjustment for confounding factors, each 10 µg/m3 of PM2.5 was associated with a 17 percent increased risk of incident nonfatal and fatal CVD events, relative hazard (RH) 1.17 (95 % confidence interval [CI]: 1.06, 1.28). Risk was increased by 14 percent for incident nonfatal CVD events (RH 1.14; 95 % CI: 1.03, 1.26) and by 32 percent for fatal CVD events (RH 1.32; 95 % CI: 1.01, 1.73). Further adjustment for second-hand smoke, occupation, socioeconomic status, diet, exercise, and medications did not appreciably change estimates.

Conclusion. Our results suggest that long-term exposure to PM2.5 is associated with both CVD mortality and with nonfatal CVD events. Chronic air pollution exposure may influence CVD incidence in postmenopausal women.

An Analysis of the Relationship Between MI and Air Pollution in Seattle

Peters and coworkers (2001) reported an association between onset of MI and short-term exposure to air pollution in subjects in Boston. We acquired a data set giving time of onset of MI for a large cohort in Seattle; however, we were not able to replicate the Peters findings. Neither short-term nor same-day and 1-day lags of PM2.5 were associated with MI onset in the Seattle data set. Explanations are being considered.

New Grant Pending

A new grant exploring associations between PM and CVD is pending entitled, “Prospective Study of Atherosclerosis, Clinical Cardiovascular Disease, and Long-Term Exposure to Ambient Particulate Matter and Other Air Pollutants in a Multi-Ethnic Cohort.”

Future Activities:

The epidemiology project will continue with the WHI research.

Journal Articles on this Report : 2 Displayed | Download in RIS Format

Other subproject views: All 21 publications 14 publications in selected types All 14 journal articles
Other center views: All 209 publications 113 publications in selected types All 109 journal articles
Type Citation Sub Project Document Sources
Journal Article Goss CH, Newsom SA, Schildcrout JS, Sheppard L, Kaufman JD. Effect of ambient air pollution on pulmonary exacerbations and lung function in cystic fibrosis. American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine 2004;169(7):816-821. R827355 (2004)
R827355 (Final)
R827355C001 (2003)
R827355C009 (2003)
  • Abstract from PubMed
  • Full-text: AJRCCM-Full Text HTML
  • Abstract: AJRCCM-Abstract
  • Other: AJRCCM-Full Text PDF
  • Journal Article Sullivan J, Sheppard L, Schreuder A, Ishikawa N, Siscovick D, Kaufman J. Relation between short-term fine-particulate matter exposure and onset of myocardial infarction. Epidemiology 2005;16(1):41-48. R827355 (Final)
    R827355C001 (2003)
    R827355C001 (Final)
    R827355C009 (2003)
    R827355C009 (Final)
  • Abstract from PubMed
  • Full-text: LWW-Full Text HTML
  • Abstract: LWW-Abstract
  • Other: LWW-Full Text PDF
  • Supplemental Keywords:

    ambient particles, fine particles, combustion, health, exposure, biostatistics, susceptibility, human susceptibility, sensitive populations, air toxics, genetic susceptibility, indoor air, indoor air quality, indoor environment, tropospheric ozone, California, CA, polyaromatic hydrocarbons, PAHs, hydrocarbons, acute cardiovascular effects, aerosols, air pollutants, air pollution, air quality, airborne pollutants, airway disease, airway inflammation, allergen, ambient aerosol, ambient aerosol particles, ambient air, ambient air quality, ambient particle health effects, animal model, assessment of exposure, asthma, atmospheric aerosols, atmospheric chemistry, biological markers, biological response, cardiopulmonary response, cardiovascular disease, children, children’s vulnerability, combustion, combustion contaminants, combustion emissions, epidemiology, exposure, exposure and effects, exposure assessment, harmful environmental agents, hazardous air pollutants, health effects, health risks, human exposure, human health effects, human health risk, incineration, inhalation, lead, morbidity, mortality, mortality studies, particle exposure, particle transport, particulates, particulate matter, risk assessment,, RFA, Health, Scientific Discipline, PHYSICAL ASPECTS, Air, Geographic Area, particulate matter, Toxicology, air toxics, Environmental Chemistry, Health Risk Assessment, Epidemiology, State, Northwest, Risk Assessments, Susceptibility/Sensitive Population/Genetic Susceptibility, Allergens/Asthma, Biochemistry, Physical Processes, Children's Health, genetic susceptability, indoor air, Atmospheric Sciences, Incineration/Combustion, ambient air quality, health effects, risk assessment, particulates, biostatistics, asthma, ambient aerosol, sensitive populations, exposure and effects, health risks, air pollutants, morbidity, cardiopulmonary responses, human health effects, acute cardiovascular effects, animal model, airway disease, hazardous air pollutants, biological response, ambient air, exposure, combustion emissions, epidemelogy, air pollution, children, Human Health Risk Assessment, particle exposure, airway inflammation, human exposure, PAHs, atmospheric aerosols, ambient particle health effects, mortality studies, cardiopulmonary response, inhalation, children's vulnerablity, assessment of exposure, airborne pollutants, combustion, hydrocarbons, harmful environmental agents, epidemeology, human susceptibility, biological markers, incineration, mortality, California (CA), allergens, indoor air quality, aerosols, atmospheric chemistry, exposure assessment, environmental hazard exposures, toxics, air quality, particle transport, allergen, cardiovascular disease, human health risk, combustion contaminants

    Relevant Websites:

    http://depts.washington.edu/pmcenter/ Exit

    Progress and Final Reports:

    Original Abstract
  • 1999 Progress Report
  • 2000 Progress Report
  • 2001 Progress Report
  • 2002 Progress Report
  • 2004
  • Final Report

  • Main Center Abstract and Reports:

    R827355    Airborne PM - Northwest Research Center for Particulate Air Pollution and Health

    Subprojects under this Center: (EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).
    R827355C001 Epidemiologic Study of Particulate Matter and Cardiopulmonary Mortality
    R827355C002 Health Effects
    R827355C003 Personal PM Exposure Assessment
    R827355C004 Characterization of Fine Particulate Matter
    R827355C005 Mechanisms of Toxicity of Particulate Matter Using Transgenic Mouse Strains
    R827355C006 Toxicology Project -- Controlled Exposure Facility
    R827355C007 Health Effects Research Core
    R827355C008 Exposure Core
    R827355C009 Statistics and Data Core
    R827355C010 Biomarker Core
    R827355C011 Oxidation Stress Makers