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RESPIRATORY DAMAGE IN CHILDREN EXPOSED TO URBAN POLLUTION
CalderonGarciduenas, L., A. MoraTiscareno, L. A. Fordham, G. Valencia, A. VillarrealCalderon, M. J. Hazucha, C. Chung, A. Rodriguez, D. Variakojis, L. Flores Camacho, R. Paredes, AND A. AntunezSolis. RESPIRATORY DAMAGE IN CHILDREN EXPOSED TO URBAN POLLUTION. PEDIATRIC PULMONOLOGY. Alan R Liss, Inc, New York, NY, 36(2):148-161, (2003).
To analyze the association between exposures to urban air pollution and respiratory damage
Southwest Metropolitan Mexico City (SWMMC) children are chronically exposed to complex mixtures of air pollutants. In a cross-sectional arm of our study, we investigated the association between exposure to SWMMC atmosphere and nasal abnormalities, hyperinflation, and interstitial markings assessed by chest X-rays, lung function changes, several serum cytokines, and endothelin-1 in 174 children aged 5-17 years vs. 27 control children residents in low-polluted areas. Control children had no nasal lesions, and only one child showed an abnormal chest X-ray. SWMMC children exhibited nasal abnormalities (22%), hyperinflation (67%), interstitial markings (49%), and a mild restrictive pattern by spirometry (10%). Interstitial markings were associated with a decrease in predicted values of FEF(25-75), FEF(75), and the FEV(1)/FVC ratio. Boys had a higher probability of developing interstitial markings with age (P = 0.004). Blood smear findings included toxic granulations in neutrophils and schistocytes. SWMMC children had more serum IL10 and IL6 and less IL8 than controls. In a longitudinal arm of our study, we found a significant seasonal drop in FVC and FEV(1) associated with a 6-month period of high ozone and PM(10) levels. Our data strongly suggest that a lifelong exposure to urban air pollution causes respiratory damage in children. Moreover, a cytokine network becomes imbalanced, with a shift towards upregulation of anti-inflammatory cytokines. Consequently, these children are potentially at risk for developing chronic lung disease and other systemic effects later in life. Copyright 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.