A National Study to Assess Susceptibility, Vulnerability, and Effect Modification of Air Pollution Health Risks

EPA Grant Number: R834798C005
Subproject: this is subproject number 005 , established and managed by the Center Director under grant R834798
(EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).

Center: Air Pollution Mixtures: Health Effects across Life Stages
Center Director: Koutrakis, Petros
Title: A National Study to Assess Susceptibility, Vulnerability, and Effect Modification of Air Pollution Health Risks
Investigators: Dominici, Francesca , Bell, Michelle L. , Schwartz, Joel , Zanobetti, Antonella
Institution: Harvard University
EPA Project Officer: Ilacqua, Vito
Project Period: January 1, 2011 through December 31, 2015 (Extended to December 31, 2016)
RFA: Clean Air Research Centers (2009) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Health Effects , Air

Objective:

The proposed research responds directly to four of the research questions posed in the EPA solicitation: 1) What are the explanations for regional and temporal differences in air pollution risk? 2) What subpopulations are at increased risk? 3) How can the health effects of PM be better understood in a multi-pollutant context? 4) What is the exposure-response relationship for these sources and mixtures? To address these we will conduct a National study aimed at identifying factors that explain the heterogeneity of health risks associated with air pollution exposure. We hypothesize that such factors include medical and social conditions, conditions that modify exposure, and differences in pollution composition that modify exposure toxicity. Moreover, we hypothesize that the relevant factors vary among different health outcomes. Our research will be fully interactive with the other Center projects. Our previous results (e.g. diabetic susceptibility) have guided their analyses, and their results have generated specific hypotheses that we will test. We have 3 objectives. In Aims I and 2, we will conduct national studies ofj- and jg-term exposures to individual pollutants, sources, and mixtures. A main focus of our Center is to study established cohorts (NAS, Framingham, and Viva) in Massachusetts and surrounding states using novel, validated approaches to assess exposure. In Aim 3, we will complement those cohort studies, by establishing a cohort of 2.3 million Medicare enrollees residing in the same region and following its members prospectively for cause-specific hospital admissions and mortality for the period 2000-20 14, and also by studying all live births in Eastern MA, geo-coded to exact address and followed for adverse birth outcomes.

Approach:

We will use the largest available collection of national datasets including: 1) daily time series data of mortality and hospital admissions for thousands of zip codes in the US; 2) a cohort of 12 million Medicare enrollees followed prospectively for cause- specific hospital admission and death during the period 2000 to 2014; 3) a comprehensive collection of individual and area-level modifying factors; 4) exposures to individual pollutants, mixtures, and sources developed by the Biostatistics and Exposure cores.

Expected Results:

Identifying factors that explain heterogeneity of risks will help to identify: 1) the populations that are more susceptible/vulnerable to air pollution; and 2) the emission sources, pollutants and pollutant mixtures that are more toxic. The characterization of susceptibility factors, such as age, gender, race, and pre-existing health conditions will inform research on biological mechanisms. The identification of the most harmful air pollution sources and components can aid decision-makers in developing targeted air quality regulations.

Publications and Presentations:

Publications have been submitted on this subproject: View all 60 publications for this subprojectView all 359 publications for this center

Journal Articles:

Journal Articles have been submitted on this subproject: View all 59 journal articles for this subprojectView all 297 journal articles for this center

Supplemental Keywords:

National studies, air pollution, heterogeneity, vulnerability, susceptibility,, Scientific Discipline, Air, air toxics, Health Risk Assessment, Air Pollution Effects, Biochemistry, Biology, ambient air quality, children's health, complex mixtures, health effects, sensitive populations, air pollutants, biological sensitivities, exposure and effects, lung epithelial cells, susceptible populations, chemical composition, neurotoxicity, toxicity, coronary artery disease, cardiopulmonary, cardiotoxicity, environmental effects, human health, mortality

Progress and Final Reports:

2010 Progress Report
2011 Progress Report
2012 Progress Report
2013 Progress Report
2014 Progress Report
Final Report


Main Center Abstract and Reports:

R834798    Air Pollution Mixtures: Health Effects across Life Stages

Subprojects under this Center: (EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).
R834798C001 Relative Toxicity of Air Pollution Mixtures
R834798C002 Cognitive Decline, Cardiovascular Changes, and Biological Aging in Response to Air Pollution
R834798C003 Identifying the Cognitive and Vascular Effects of Air Pollution Sources and Mixtures in the Framingharn Offspring and Third Generation Cohorts
R834798C004 Longitudinal Effects of Multiple Pollutants on Child Growth, Blood Pressure and Cognition
R834798C005 A National Study to Assess Susceptibility, Vulnerability, and Effect Modification of Air Pollution Health Risks