Climate Change, Indoor Ozone and Vascular Function

EPA Grant Number: R835759
Title: Climate Change, Indoor Ozone and Vascular Function
Investigators: Kipen, Howard , Ryan, P. Barry , Barr, Dana Boyd , Georgopoulos, Panos G. , Weschler, Charles J. , Lioy, Paul J. , Ohman-Strickland, Pamela , Meng, Qingyu
Institution: Rutgers
EPA Project Officer: Chung, Serena
Project Period: May 1, 2015 through April 30, 2018 (Extended to April 30, 2019)
Project Amount: $999,975
RFA: Indoor Air and Climate Change (2014) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Air Quality and Air Toxics , Climate Change , Air


The main goal is to study the impact of changes in ambient O3 resulting from climate change on indoor exposure to O3 and O3-byproducts, ultimately assessing cardiovascular health risk, in a susceptible (elderly) group, for two climatically different regions (New Jersey & Georgia). Specific objectives are to:

1. Examine how changes in ambient O¬3 as a consequence of climate change may affect indoor air quality (IAQ) through both a direct effect on indoor O3 concentration and an indirect effect on indoor chemistry. We hypothesize that: 1) indoor O3 concentrations as well as the reaction products of O3 with typically abundant indoor alkenes, limonene and squalene, will increase with increasing outdoor O3 concentration; and 2) relative to outdoor O3, indoor O3 concentrations will increase with increasing ventilation rates, while the concentrations of O3/alkene reaction products will decrease with increasing ventilation rates.

2. Examine whether indoor exposures to air pollutants and cardiorespiratory responses can be modified by a portable air cleaner. We hypothesize that 3) The use of portable air cleaners can reduce indoor exposures to O3 and O3/alkene reaction products,; and 4) the use of portable air cleaners can significantly improve microvascular function and reduce markers of pulmonary oxidative stress, indicators of increased risk for adverse health outcomes.

3. Model climate change impacts on ambient O3 pollution, indoor exposures to O3 and its reaction products, and cardiovascular health outcomes. We hypothesize that 5) The impact of climate change on indoor exposures and health can be modeled based on data from Objectives 1 and 2; and 6) combining projections of indoor exposures to O3 and reaction products with results from Objective 2 and the literature on predictors of cardiac risk, one can estimate risk for adverse cardiac events from climate driven changes in indoor O3.


We will recruit a total of 30 individuals from Jersey City and Atlanta who are 60-75 years old and live in houses with window AC. We will measure both indoor and outdoor O3, PM2.5, and O3-alkene reaction products for two 48-h sessions for each home during the warm/hot season – the season most likely affected by climate change. Temperature, relative humidity and ventilation rate will also be measured at each home. Using a crossover design, one session will have active air cleaners in both living- and bedrooms and another will use sham air cleaners with filters removed. Participants will be tested for cardiorespiratory responses after each 48-hr period. We will examine 1) how changes in ambient O¬3 and home ventilation rate affect indoor levels of O3 and O3/alkene reaction products; and 2) whether introduction of air cleaners can temporarily reduce indoor PM2.5, O3 and O3 reaction products and improve biomarkers of cardiopulmonary health. We will model climate change impacts on ambient O3 pollution, indoor exposures to O3 and O3 reaction products, and cardiorespiratory outcomes for two climatically different areas. These studies examine IAQ contributions to cardiovascular diseases, and augment considerations regarding interventions to address climate change impacts in the elderly.

Publications and Presentations:

Publications have been submitted on this project: View all 8 publications for this project

Supplemental Keywords:

climate change, indoor ozone, ozone-initialized chemistry, vascular function

Progress and Final Reports:

  • 2015 Progress Report
  • 2016 Progress Report
  • 2017 Progress Report
  • Final Report