Exploring New Questions of Multiple Air Pollutants, Sources and Health in Denver

EPA Grant Number: R834899
Title: Exploring New Questions of Multiple Air Pollutants, Sources and Health in Denver
Investigators: Peel, Jennifer , Hannigan, Michael P.
Institution: Colorado State University , University of Colorado at Boulder
EPA Project Officer: Chung, Serena
Project Period: April 1, 2011 through March 31, 2013 (Extended to August 31, 2014)
Project Amount: $298,362
RFA: Exploring New Air Pollution Health Effects Links in Existing Datasets (2010) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Air Quality and Air Toxics , Air


The proposed project will take advantage of a rich and unique existing dataset to evaluate novel questions regarding the relationship between air pollution and hospital admissions in Denver, Colorado. We will leverage five years of data from the Denver Aerosol Sources and Health (DASH) study, including daily fine particulate matter mass, species, and source factors, to examine the association of air pollution with novel health outcomes. Additionally, we will explore several questions aimed at providing insight regarding susceptible populations as well as regarding other potential factors leading to heterogeneity of health effect estimates in relation to ambient air pollution.


To accomplish these objectives, we will create new health outcome groups broadly related to systemic inflammation, immune function, blood clotting, and autonomic nervous system regulation, based on primary diagnostic codes within the existing hospital admission dataset. We will also stratify the hospital admissions based on secondary diagnostic codes indicating underlying immunosuppressive, autoimmune, and other metabolic and obesity-related disorders. We will perform Poisson time-series regression modeling to evaluate the objectives. The activities also include an investigation of the health effects in a multipollutant framework as well as an exploration of the sensitivity of results to extreme values and to data availability.

Expected Results:

The results of this proposed research will provide a more comprehensive understanding of the burden of disease due to ambient air pollution by expanding the scope of the health impacts and by investigating potential explanations for differences in observed associations in different geographic areas. This improved understanding could allow for more accurate and valid estimation of the risk due to ambient air pollution, including for potentially susceptible populations, as well as provide insight regarding current air quality standards designed to protect public health.

Publications and Presentations:

Publications have been submitted on this project: View all 4 publications for this project

Journal Articles:

Journal Articles have been submitted on this project: View all 4 journal articles for this project

Supplemental Keywords:

ambient air, exposure, risk, health effects, human health, monitoring, ozone, particulate matter, dose-response, children, elderly, age, sex, nitrogen oxides, sulfates, organics, epidemiology, modeling, environmental chemistry, EPA Region 8

Progress and Final Reports:

  • 2011 Progress Report
  • 2012 Progress Report
  • 2013 Progress Report
  • Final Report