Publications by authors named "Zhuohui Zhao"

98 Publications

Indoor exposure levels of radon in dwellings, schools, and offices in China from 2000 to 2020: A systematic review.

Indoor Air 2021 Aug 25. Epub 2021 Aug 25.

School of Environment and Architecture, University of Shanghai for Science and Technology, Shanghai, China.

After decades of development, the indoor environment in China has changed. A systematic review was conducted from peer-reviewed scientific papers with field test data of indoor radon in China from 2000 to 2020 for three types of buildings. The mean concentrations of indoor radon for dwellings, school buildings, and office buildings are 54.6, 56.1, and 54.9 Bq/m . The indoor radon concentration was related to seasons, climate regions, ventilation, decoration, and other factors such as soil and outdoor air. Colder seasons, especially in severe colder areas of China, newer decorated buildings, closed windows, and doors were all associated with higher indoor radon concentrations. Variables like climate region and ventilation showed statistical significance in the correlation analysis. Regarding the increasing trend of indoor radon concentration in China during the last two decades, further study of indoor radon is necessary especially for school buildings and office buildings, and will help access its environmental burden of disease in China more accurately.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ina.12920DOI Listing
August 2021

The decay of airborne bacteria and fungi in a constant temperature and humidity test chamber.

Environ Int 2021 Aug 13;157:106816. Epub 2021 Aug 13.

Shanghai Key Laboratory of Atmospheric Particle Pollution and Prevention (LAP(3)), Department of Environmental Science & Engineering, Fudan Tyndall Centre, Institute of Atmospheric Sciences, Fudan University, Shanghai 200438, China; IRDR International Center of Excellence on Risk Interconnectivity and Governance on Weather/Climate Extremes Impact and Public Health, Institute of Atmospheric Sciences, Fudan University, Shanghai 200438, China; Institute of Eco-Chongming (IEC), Shanghai 200062, China. Electronic address:

Despite substantial research to profile the microbial characteristics in the atmosphere, the changing metabolism underpinning microbial successional dynamics remains ambiguous. Herein, we applied qPCR, high-throughput sequencing of the genes encoding 16S and ITS rRNA to render the bacterial/fungal dynamics of ambient PM filters maintained at constant conditions of temperature (20 ± 2 °C) and humidity (50 ± 5%). The incubation experiments which lasted for 50 days aim to simulate a metabolic process of microbe in two types PM (polluted and non-polluted). The results show that microbial community species in polluted PM had faster decay rates, more bacterial diversity and less fungal community compared to the non-polluted ones. For bacteria, the proportion of anaerobic species is higher than aerobic ones, and their performance of contain mobile elements, form-biofilms, and pathogenic risks declined rapidly as times went by. Whereas for fungi, saprotroph species occupied about 70% of the population, resulting in a specified peak of abundance due to the adequacy nutrients supplied by the apoptosis cells. Combining the classified microbial species, we found stable community structure and the volatile ones related to the various metabolic survival strategies during different time. Without the input of peripheral environment, the health risks of airborne microbe descend to a healthy level after 20 days, implying their biologic effectiveness was about 20 days no matter the air is polluted or not. This study provided new insights into the different metabolic survival of airborne microorganisms in ideal and stable conditions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envint.2021.106816DOI Listing
August 2021

Impact of ozone exposure on heart rate variability and stress hormones: A randomized-crossover study.

J Hazard Mater 2021 Jul 26;421:126750. Epub 2021 Jul 26.

Department of Environmental Health, School of Public Health, Key Lab of Public Health Safety of the Ministry of Education and NHC Key Lab of Health Technology Assessment, Fudan University, P.O. Box 249,130 Dong-An Road, Shanghai 200032, China; Children's Hospital of Fudan University, National Center for Children's Health, Shanghai, China. Electronic address:

The biological mechanisms underlying the associations between atmospheric ozone exposure and adverse cardiometabolic outcomes are yet to be identified. Imbalanced autonomic nervous system (ANS) as well as activations of the sympatho-adrenomedullary (SAM) and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axes are among possible early biological responses triggered by ozone, and may eventually lead to cardiometabolic abnormalities. To determine whether acute ozone exposure causes ANS imbalance and increases the secretion of neuroendocrine stress hormones, we conducted a randomized, double-blind, crossover trial, under controlled 2-hour exposure to either ozone (200 ppb) or clean air with intermittent exercise among 22 healthy young adults. Here we found that, compared to clean air exposure, acute ozone exposure significantly decreased the high-frequency band of heart rate variability, even after adjusting for heart rate and pre-exposure to ambient air pollutants and meteorological factors. Ozone exposure also significantly increased the serum levels of stress hormones, including corticotrophin-releasing factor, adrenocorticotropic hormone, adrenaline, and noradrenaline. Metabolomics analysis showed that acute ozone exposure led to alterations in stress hormones, systemic inflammation, oxidative stress, and energy metabolism. Our results suggest that acute ozone exposure may trigger ANS imbalance and activate the HPA and SAM axes, offering potential biological explanations for the adverse cardiometabolic effects following acute ozone exposure.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jhazmat.2021.126750DOI Listing
July 2021

Eczema, facial erythema, and seborrheic dermatitis symptoms among young adults in China in relation to ambient air pollution, climate, and home environment.

Indoor Air 2021 Aug 1. Epub 2021 Aug 1.

Department of Medical Sciences, Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden.

A questionnaire survey on dermal symptoms and home environment was performed in eight Chinese cities (40 279 participants). Data on city level temperature, precipitation, PM , NO and gross domestic product (GDP) per capita were collected. In total, 2.2% had eczema, 2.4% facial erythema (FE) and 2.6% seborrheic dermatitis symptoms (SD). Higher temperature was associated with eczema (OR = 1.09). Higher GDP per capita was related to less SD. Higher PM was related to SD. Suburban living was protective for eczema (OR = 0.77) (vs. urban). Living in old buildings (built before 1991) was related to eczema (OR = 1.42). Living near heavily trafficked roads was related to FE (OR = 1.33) and SD (OR = 1.35). Having new furniture was related to all symptoms (OR = 1.26-1.47). Burning mosquito coils (OR = 1.37-1.57) and incense (OR = 1.33-1.37) were associated with eczema, FE, or SD. Presence of cockroaches and rats/mice was associated with FE or SD (OR = 1.31-1.40). Using air conditioner, daily cleaning and frequently exposing bedding to sunshine were protective (OR = 0.60-0.83). In conclusion, higher temperature, higher PM , urban living, living near heavily trafficked roads, old buildings, new furniture, burning mosquito coils and incense, and presence of cockroaches/rats/mice increased the risk of eczema, FE, or SD. Higher GDP, air conditioner, daily cleaning, and exposing bedding to sunshine were protective.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ina.12918DOI Listing
August 2021

Classroom microbiome, functional pathways and sick-building syndrome (SBS) in urban and rural schools - Potential roles of indoor microbial amino acids and vitamin metabolites.

Sci Total Environ 2021 Nov 7;795:148879. Epub 2021 Jul 7.

Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Protein Function and Regulation in Agricultural Organisms, College of Life Sciences, South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou, Guangdong 510642, PR China; Key Laboratory of Zoonosis of Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou, Guangdong 510642, PR China; Guangdong Laboratory for Lingnan Modern Agriculture, South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou, Guangdong 510642, PR China. Electronic address:

Sick building symptoms (SBS) are defined as non-specific symptoms related to indoor exposures, including mucosal symptoms in eye, nose, throat, and skin, and general symptoms as headache and tiredness. Indoor microbial composition is associated with SBS symptoms, but the impact of microbial functional genes and potential metabolic products has not been characterized. We conducted a shotgun microbial metagenomic sequencing for vacuum dust collected in urban and rural schools in Shanxi province, China. SBS symptoms in students were surveyed, and microbial taxa and functional pathways related to the symptoms were identified using a multi-level linear regression model. SBS symptoms were common in students, and the prevalence of ocular and throat symptoms, headache, and tiredness was higher in urban than in rural areas (p < 0.05). A significant higher microbial α-diversity was found in rural areas than in urban areas (Chao1, p = 0.001; ACE, p = 0.002). Also, significant variation in microbial taxonomic and functional composition (β-diversity) was observed between urban and rural areas (p < 0.005). Five potential risk Actinobacteria species were associated with SBS symptoms (p < 0.01); students in the classrooms with a higher abundance of an unclassified Geodermatophilaceae, Geodermatophilus, Fridmanniella luteola, Microlunatus phosphovorus and Mycetocola reported more nasal and throat symptoms and tiredness. Students with a higher abundance of an unclassified flavobacteriaceae reported fewer throat symptoms and tiredness. The abundance of microbial metabolic pathways related to the synthesis of B vitamins (biotin and folate), gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), and peptidoglycan and were protectively (negatively) associated with SBS symptoms (FDR < 0.05). The result is consistent with human microbiota studies, which reported that these microbial products are extensively involved in immunological processes and anti-inflammatory effects. This is the first study to report the functional potential of the indoor microbiome and the occurrence of SBS, providing new insights into the potential etiologic mechanisms in chronic inflammatory diseases.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.148879DOI Listing
November 2021

Associations between home renovation and asthma, allergic rhinitis, and eczema among preschool children in Wuhan, China.

Int J Environ Health Res 2021 Jul 29:1-11. Epub 2021 Jul 29.

Department of Occupational and Environmental Health, School of Public Health, Wuhan University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, Hubei, China.

To investigate the potential associations between household renovation and allergic diseases among preschool children in Wuhan, we conducted a large cross-sectional questionnaire survey among 9455 preschool children aged 3-6 years in Wuhan during November to December 2019. Data on demographics, health status, and home decoration conditions were analysed based on a questionnaire. Compared with tiles/stone/cement floor covering, the use of composite floor significantly increased the risk of diagnosed rhinitis and eczema among children (rhinitis: AOR, 95% CI: 1.36, 1.06-1.73; eczema: AOR, 95% CI: 1.47, 1.17-1.85). Household renovation had significant associations with diagnosed eczema (within 1 year before pregnancy: AOR, 95% CI: 1.34, 1.20-1.50; during pregnancy: AOR, 95% CI: 1.25, 1.08-1.44). This study suggests that use of artificial synthetic materials in home renovation during early childhood and pregnancy may be potential risk factors for childhood asthma, allergic rhinitis, and eczema.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09603123.2021.1955832DOI Listing
July 2021

Metabolomic Study of High-Fat Diet-Induced Obese (DIO) and DIO Plus CCl-Induced NASH Mice and the Effect of Obeticholic Acid.

Metabolites 2021 Jun 10;11(6). Epub 2021 Jun 10.

Shanghai Institute of Materia Medica, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai 201203, China.

The pathophysiology of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a complex process involving metabolic and inflammatory changes in livers and other organs, but the pathogenesis is still not well clarified. Two mouse models were established to study metabolic alteration of nonalcoholic fatty liver and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, respectively. The concentrations of metabolites in serum, liver and intestine content were measured by the AbsoluteIDQ p180 Kit (Biocrates Life Sciences, Innsbruck, Austria). Multivariate statistical methods, pathway analysis, enrichment analysis and correlation analysis were performed to analyze metabolomic data. The metabolic characteristics of liver, serum and intestine content could be distinctly distinguished from each group, indicating the occurrence of metabolic disturbance. Among them, metabolic alteration of liver and intestine content was more significant. Based on the metabolic data of liver, 19 differential metabolites were discovered between DIO and control, 12 between DIO-CCl and DIO, and 47 between DIO-CCl and normal. These metabolites were mainly associated with aminoacyl-tRNA biosynthesis, nitrogen metabolism, lipid metabolism, glyoxylate and dicarboxylate metabolism, and amino metabolism. Further study revealed that the intervention of obeticholic acid (OCA) could partly reverse the damage of CCl. The correlation analysis of metabolite levels and clinical parameters showed that phosphatidylcholines were negatively associated with serum alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, NAFLD activity score, and fibrosis score, while lysophosphatidylcholines, sphingomyelins, amino acids, and acylcarnitines shared the reverse pattern. Our study investigated metabolic alteration among control, NAFLD model, and OCA treatment groups, providing preclinical information to understand the mechanism of NAFLD and amelioration of OCA.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/metabo11060374DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8230384PMC
June 2021

Indoor exposure levels of ammonia in residences, schools, and offices in China from 1980 to 2019: A systematic review.

Indoor Air 2021 Jun 28. Epub 2021 Jun 28.

School of Environment and Architecture, University of Shanghai for Science and Technology, Shanghai, China.

Indoor ammonia (NH ) pollution has been paid more and more attention in view of its health risk. However, few studies have investigated the exposure level in the non-occupational environment in China. This study systematically reviewed the indoor ammonia exposure level in different regions, the equivalent exposure concentration of different populations, and the factors that influence indoor air ammonia in residences, offices, and schools in China. The literature published in 1980-2019 from main databases was searched and detailed screened, and finally, 56 related studies were selected. The results illustrated that the median concentration of indoor air ammonia in residences, offices, and school buildings was 0.21 mg/m , 0.26 mg/m , and 0.15 mg/m . There were 46.4%, 71.4%, and 40% of these samples exceeding the NH  standard, respectively. The national concentrations and the equivalent exposure levels of adults and children were calculated and found to be higher than 0.20 mg/m . The concentration of ammonia varied greatly in different climate zones and economic development regions. Higher concentrations were found in the severe cold zone and the regions with higher economic level. This review reveals a high exposure risk of indoor air ammonia and the crucial impact of human emission, indoor air temperature, new concrete, and economic level, suggesting further investigation on indoor air ammonia evaluation and health effects.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ina.12864DOI Listing
June 2021

Indoor bacterial, fungal and viral species and functional genes in urban and rural schools in Shanxi Province, China-association with asthma, rhinitis and rhinoconjunctivitis in high school students.

Microbiome 2021 06 12;9(1):138. Epub 2021 Jun 12.

Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Protein Function and Regulation in Agricultural Organisms, College of Life Sciences, South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou, Guangdong, 510642, People's Republic of China.

Background: Studies in developed countries have reported that the prevalence of asthma and rhinitis is higher in urban areas than in rural areas, and this phenomenon is associated with urbanization and changing indoor microbiome exposure. Developing countries such as China have experienced rapid urbanization in past years, but no study has investigated microbiome exposure and urban-rural health effects in these countries.

Methods: Nine high schools from urban and rural areas were randomly selected in Shanxi Province, China, and classroom vacuum dust was collected for shotgun metagenomic sequencing. A self-administered questionnaire was collected from 1332 students for personal information and health data. Three-level logistic regression was performed between microbial richness/abundance/functional pathways and the occurrence of asthma and rhinitis symptoms.

Results: Consistent with developed countries, the prevalence of wheeze and rhinitis was higher in urban areas than in rural areas (p < 0.05). Metagenomic profiling revealed 8302 bacterial, 395 archaeal, 744 fungal, 524 protist and 1103 viral species in classroom dust. Actinobacteria (mean relative abundance 49.7%), Gammaproteobacteria (18.4%) and Alphaproteobacteria (10.0%) were the most abundant bacterial classes. The overall microbiome composition was significantly different between urban and rural schools (p = 0.001, Adonis). Species from Betaproteobactera, Gammaproteobacteria and Bacilli were enriched in urban schools, and species from Actinobacteria and Cyanobacteria were enriched in rural schools. Potential pathogens were present in higher abundance in urban schools than in rural schools (p < 0.05). Pseudoalteromonas, Neospora caninum and Microbacterium foliorum were positively associated with the occurrence of wheeze, rhinitis and rhinoconjunctivitis, and Brachybacterium was protectively (negatively) associated with rhinitis (p < 0.01). The abundance of human endocrine and metabolic disease pathways was positively associated with rhinitis (p = 0.008), and butyrate and propionate metabolic genes and pathways were significantly enriched in rural schools (p < 0.005), in line with previous findings that these short-chain fatty acids protect against inflammatory diseases in the human gut.

Conclusions: We conducted the first indoor microbiome survey in urban/rural environments with shotgun metagenomics, and the results revealed high-resolution microbial taxonomic and functional profiling and potential health effects. Video abstract.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s40168-021-01091-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8199840PMC
June 2021

A new mechanism of obeticholic acid on NASH treatment by inhibiting NLRP3 inflammasome activation in macrophage.

Metabolism 2021 Jul 10;120:154797. Epub 2021 May 10.

Laboratory of Anti-inflammation, Shanghai Institute of Materia Medica, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai 201203, PR China. Electronic address:

Objective: Obeticholic acid (OCA) has been proved to play potential therapeutic effect on nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Up to now, the study of OCA on NLRP3 inflammasome activation in macrophage is still blank and merits great attention. Here, we aimed to better characterize the role and mechanism of OCA on NASH treatment focusing on NLRP3 inflammasome activation in macrophages.

Methods: The effects of OCA on inflammasome activation were investigated in BMDM, Kupffer cell, BMDC and LX2 cell. Preconditioned media from BMDM culture was used to treat primary hepatocytes to explore the effects of macrophage NLRP3 inflammasome activation on the function of hepatocytes. In vivo, high fat diet plus CCl (DIO + CCl) induced murine NASH model and choline-deficient and amino acid-defined (CDA) diet-induced NASH mice were used to verify the inhibitory effect of OCA on inflammasome activation in liver macrophages and recapitulate its protective role on NASH progressing. To clear up the effect of OCA on macrophage is FXR dependent or not, FXR siRNA was introduced into BMDMs.

Results: OCA blockaded NLRP3 inflammasome in BMDMs by impacting on the activation stage and disrupting ASC oligomerization. Preconditioned supernatant from LPS + ATP treated BMDMs increased mRNA expression of lipogenic enzymes and lipid content, whereas preconditioned supernatant from OCA treated BMDM blocked these effects in both normal and the FXR knockdown hepatocytes. In DIO + CCl mice, the population of inflammatory myeloid lineage cells in livers was decreased upon OCA treatment. Accordingly, the level of IL-1β and IL-18 in liver, the hepatic expression of ASC, pro-caspase-1 and active caspase-1, the expression of caspase 1 p20 in liver macrophages were also reduced. Similar results were obtained in CDA diet-fed mice. Furthermore, OCA maintained the inhibition on NLRP3 inflammasome activation in FXR knockdown BMDMs, suggesting FXR could be dispensable in this effect.

Conclusions: This finding brings up a new mechanism of OCA on NASH treatment, suggested by direct inhibition on NLRP3 inflammasome activation in macrophage, further suppression on inflammasome activation-elicited hepatic lipid accumulation, and contributing to the amelioration of NASH.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.metabol.2021.154797DOI Listing
July 2021

Prenatal and perinatal home environment and reported onset of wheeze, rhinitis and eczema symptoms in preschool children in Northern China.

Sci Total Environ 2021 Jun 6;774:145700. Epub 2021 Feb 6.

School of Public Health, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.

Early life environment can affect asthma and allergies but few cohort studies on this issue are available from China. Our aim was to investigate reported onset of childhood wheeze, rhinitis and eczema symptoms in relation to prenatal, perinatal and postnatal home environment. Data on home environment and symptoms (ISAAC based questions) in first two years of life and in the past 12 months were reported by parents of the children (3-6 y) in a cross-sectional questionnaire survey in ten day care centers in Taiyuan, northern China (N = 3606). Changes of symptoms from the first 2 years of life to the past 12 months (recall period) were calculated retrospectively. Multilevel logistic regression analysis was applied. Reported onset of wheeze, rhinitis and eczema were 11.8%, 22.2% and 3.3%, respectively. Redecorating during pregnancy increased reported onset of rhinitis (OR = 2.29) and eczema (OR = 4.91). New furniture during pregnancy increased reported onset of rhinitis (OR = 1.47). Perinatal indoor mould increased reported onset of wheeze (OR = 1.51), rhinitis (OR = 1.65) and eczema (OR = 1.91). Perinatal mould odour increased reported onset of wheeze (OR = 1.85). Perinatal window pane condensation increased reported onset of wheeze (OR = 1.54) and rhinitis (OR = 1.24). Perinatal stuffy air and dry air in the home increased reported onset of all three symptoms (ORs 1.46-2.24). Dog keeping increased reported onset of wheeze (OR = 1.69) and eczema (OR = 2.13). Based on principal component analysis, four exposure scores were calculated (renovation, new furniture, mould and indoor air quality scores). Dose-response relationships were observed between these exposure scores and reported onset of symptoms. In conclusion, prenatal and postnatal exposure to emissions from renovation and new furniture can increase reported onset of childhood wheeze, rhinitis and eczema. Perinatal indoor mould, mould odour, condensation on window panes and impaired indoor air quality at home can be associated with reported development of wheeze, rhinitis and eczema in preschoolers in northern China.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.145700DOI Listing
June 2021

On-field test and data calibration of a low-cost sensor for fine particles exposure assessment.

Ecotoxicol Environ Saf 2021 Mar 25;211:111958. Epub 2021 Jan 25.

School of Public Health, Key Lab of Public Health Safety of the Ministry of Education and NHC Key Lab of Health Technology Assessment, Fudan University, Shanghai 200032, China; Children's Hospital of Fudan University, National Center for Children's Health, Shanghai 201102, China. Electronic address:

Background: Accurate individual exposure assessment is crucial for evaluating the health effects of particulate matter (PM). Various portable monitors built upon low-cost optical sensors have emerged. However, the main challenge for their application is to guarantee accuracy of measurements.

Objective: To assess the performance of a newly developed PM sensor, and to develop methods for post-hoc data calibration to optimize its data quality.

Method: We conducted a series of laboratory experiments and field evaluations to quantify the reproducibility within Plantower PM sensors 7003 (PMS 7003) and the consistency between sensors and two established PM measurement methods [tapered element oscillating microbalances (TEOM) and gravimetric method (GM)]. Post-hoc data calibration methods for sensors were based on a multiple linear regression model (MLRM) and a random forest model (RFM). Ratios of raw and calibrated readings over the data of reference methods were calculated to examine the improvement after calibration.

Results: Strong correlations (≥0.82) and relatively small relative standard deviations (16-21%) between sensors were found during the laboratory and the field sampling. Compared with the reference methods, moderate to strong coefficients of determination (0.56-0.83) were observed; however, significant deviations were presented. After calibration, the ratios of PMS measurements over that of two reference methods both became convergent.

Conclusions: Our study validated low-cost optical PM sensors under a wide range of PM concentrations (8-167 μg/m). Our findings indicated potential applicability of PM sensors in PM exposure assessment, and confirmed a need of calibration. Linear calibration methods may be sufficient for ambient monitoring using TEOM as a reference, while nonlinear calibration methods may be more appropriate for indoor monitoring using GM as a reference.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ecoenv.2021.111958DOI Listing
March 2021

Acute respiratory response to individual particle exposure (PM, PM and PM) in the elderly with and without chronic respiratory diseases.

Environ Pollut 2021 Feb 17;271:116329. Epub 2020 Dec 17.

Department of Environmental Health, School of Public Health, Fudan University, Shanghai, 200032, China; Key Laboratory of Public Health Safety of the Ministry of Education, NHC Key Laboratory of Health Technology Assessment (Fudan University), Shanghai Typhoon Institute/CMA, Shanghai Key Laboratory of Meteorology and Health, Shanghai, 200030, China. Electronic address:

Limited data were on the acute respiratory responses in the elderly in response to personal exposure of particulate matter (PM). In order to evaluate the changes of airway inflammation and pulmonary functions in the elderly in response to individual exposure of particles (PM, PM and PM), we analyzed 43 elderly subjects with either asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or Asthma COPD Overlap (ACO) and 40 age-matched subjects without asthma nor COPD in an urban community in Shanghai, China. Data were collected at the baseline and in 6 follow-ups from August 2016 to December 2018, once every 3 months except for the last twice with a 6-month interval. In each follow-up, pulmonary functions, fractional exhaled nitric oxide (FeNO), 7-day continuous personal exposure to airborne particles were measured. Multivariate linear mixed effect regression models were applied to investigate the quantitative changes of pulmonary functions and FeNO in two respective groups. The results showed that on average 4.7 follow-up visits were completed in each participant. In subjects with CRDs, an inter-quartile range (IQR) increase of personal exposure to PM, PM and PM was significantly associated with an average increase of FeNO(Lag1) of 6.7 ppb (95%CI 1.2, 9.9 ppb), 6.2 ppb (95%CI 1.5, 12.0 ppb) and 5.6 ppb (95%CI 1.5, 11.0 ppb), respectively, and an average decrease of FEV1(Lag2) of -3.6 L (95%CI -6.0, -1.1 L), -3.6 L (95%CI -6.4, -0.8 L) and -3.2 L (95%CI -5.8, -0.6 L), respectively, in the single-pollutant model. These associations remained consistent in the two-pollutant models adjusting for gaseous air pollutants. Stratified analysis showed that subjects with lower BMI, females and non-allergies were more sensitive to particle exposure. No robust significant effects were observed in the subjects without CRDs. Our study provided data on the susceptibility of the elderly with CRDs to particle exposure of PM and PM, and the modification effects by BMI, gender and history of allergies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envpol.2020.116329DOI Listing
February 2021

Ambient PM and its chemical constituents on lifetime-ever pneumonia in Chinese children: A multi-center study.

Environ Int 2021 01 18;146:106176. Epub 2020 Nov 18.

Department of Environmental Health, School of Public Health, Fudan University, Shanghai 200032, China; Key Laboratory of Public Health Safety of the Ministry of Education, NHC Key Laboratory of Health Technology Assessment (Fudan University), Shanghai Typhoon Institute/CMA, Shanghai Key Laboratory of Meteorology and Health, Shanghai 200030, China. Electronic address:

The long-term effects of ambient PM and chemical constituents on childhood pneumonia were still unknown. A cross-sectional study was conducted in 30,315 children in the China Children, Homes, Health (CCHH) project, involving 205 preschools in six cities in China, to investigate the long-term effects of PM constituents on lifetime-ever diagnosed pneumonia. Information on the lifetime-ever pneumonia and demographics were collected by validated questionnaires. The lifetime annual average ambient PM, ozone and five main PM constituents, including SO, NO, NH, organic matter (OM) and black carbon (BC), were estimated according to preschool addresses by a combination of satellite remote sensing, chemical transport modeling and ground-based monitors. The prevalence of lifetime-ever diagnosed pneumonia was 34.5% across six cities and differed significantly among cities (p = 0.004). The two-level logistic regression models showed that the adjusted odds ratio for PM (per 10 µg/m) and its constituents (per 1 µg/m)-SO, NO, NH, and OM were 1.12 (95% CI:1.07-1.18), 1.02 (1.00-1.04), 1.06 (1.04-1.09), 1.05 (1.03-1.07) and 1.09 (1.06-1.12), respectively. Children in urban area, aged < 5 years and breastfeeding time < 6 months enhanced the risks of pneumonia. Our study provided robust results that long-term levels of ambient PM and its constituents increased the risk of childhood pneumonia, especially NH, NO and OM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envint.2020.106176DOI Listing
January 2021

Onset and remission of eczema at pre-school age in relation to prenatal and postnatal air pollution and home environment across China.

Sci Total Environ 2021 Feb 24;755(Pt 1):142467. Epub 2020 Sep 24.

XiangYa School of Public Health, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan, China; School of Energy Science and Engineering, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan, China. Electronic address:

We investigated associations between prenatal and postnatal environmental factors and onset and remission of preschool childhood eczema across China. The study population was preschoolers in randomized day care centers in seven cities (N = 39,782). Data on eczema and prenatal and postnatal indoor and outdoor environment were obtained from a cross-sectional questionnaire sent to parents or other guardians. Reports on eczema in the first 2 years and in the past year was used to retrospectively calculate onset and remission (changes of reported eczema). Prenatal and postnatal outdoor temperature, NO and PM were modelled from official air pollution data. Associations were estimated by two-level logistic regression. Calculated onset rate was 3.2%/y and remission rate 29.2%/y. Exposure to NO during pregnancy was associated with onset of eczema, similarly for all trimesters. Postnatal PM and NO were related to decreased remission. Postnatal outdoor temperature was associated with onset of eczema. Pre-natal and current redecoration or buying new furniture, and perinatal as well as current dampness and indoor mould, were associated with increased onset and decreased remission. Cockroaches in current home was another indoor risk factors. Prenatal exposure to farm environment and large family size were all negatively associated with eczema. In conclusion, a warmer climate and prenatal NO can be associated with increased onset of eczema in Chinese preschoolers. Postnatal PM and NO can be associated with reduced remission. Perinatal and current dampness, indoor mould and cockroaches may increase onset and decrease remission. Exposure to chemical emissions from indoor materials after first year of life may increase onset. Prenatal exposure to farm environment and large family size could be protective.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.142467DOI Listing
February 2021

Asthma and allergic rhinitis among young parents in China in relation to outdoor air pollution, climate and home environment.

Sci Total Environ 2021 Jan 18;751:141734. Epub 2020 Aug 18.

Department of Medical Sciences, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden.

We estimated associations between ambient air pollution, home environment and asthma as well as rhinitis among adults across China. A total of 40,279 young adults from eight Chinese cities participated in a questionnaire survey (participation rate 75%). There were questions on health and home environment. Information on city level gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, ambient temperature and PM and NO were collected from registers. Two-level logistic regression models were used to study health associations. Totally 1.6% reported asthma and 6.6% reported allergic rhinitis (AR). Higher temperature was associated with more asthma but less AR. Higher GDP was associated with less asthma but more AR. Higher degree of urbanization, higher level of NO and living near heavily trafficked road were risk factors for asthma and AR. Participants in older buildings reported more asthma. Redecoration and buying new furniture were related to more asthma and AR (OR = 1.15-1.91). Using natural gas (OR = 1.34) and biomass (OR = 1.35) for cooking were risk factors for AR. Burning mosquito coils and incense increased the risk of asthma and AR. Cat keeping (OR = 2.88), dog keeping (OR = 2.04), cockroaches (OR = 1.54) and rats or mice (OR = 1.46) were associated with asthma. Cockroaches increased the risk of AR (OR = 1.22). Air humidifier and air cleaner were linked to asthma and AR. Frequent cleaning and exposing bedding to sunshine were protective. In conclusion, urbanization, NO and traffic exhaust can increase the risk of adult asthma and AR. Higher ambient temperature was related to more asthma but less AR. Indoor animals such as cats, dogs, rats/mice and presence of cockroaches were associated with asthma or AR. Indoor chemical sources such as redecoration and new furniture were other risk factors. Cooking with natural gas or biomass and burning mosquito coils and incense were associated with asthma or AR. Frequent cleaning and exposing bedding to sunshine were protective.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.141734DOI Listing
January 2021

Indoor exposure levels of bacteria and fungi in residences, schools, and offices in China: A systematic review.

Indoor Air 2020 11 25;30(6):1147-1165. Epub 2020 Sep 25.

School of Energy and Environment, Southeast University, Nanjing, China.

Microbes in buildings have attracted extensive attention from both the research community and the general public due to their close relationship with human health. However, there still lacks comprehensive information on the indoor exposure level of microbes in China. This study systematically reviews exposure levels, the community structures, and the impact factors of airborne bacteria and fungi in residences, schools, and offices in China. We reviewed the major literature databases between 1980 and 2019 and selected 55 original studies based on a set of criteria. Results show that the concentration of indoor bacteria varies from 72.5 to 7500 CFU/m , with a median value of 1000 CFU/m , and the concentration of fungi varies from 12 to 9730 CFU/m , with a median value of 526 CFU/m . The concentration level of microbes varies in different climate zones, with higher bacterial concentrations in the severe cold zone, and higher fungal concentrations in the hot summer and warm winter zone. Among different buildings, classrooms have the highest average bacteria and fungi levels. This review reveals that a unified assessment system based on health effects is needed for evaluating the exposure levels of bacteria and fungi.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ina.12734DOI Listing
November 2020

Common cold among young adults in China without a history of asthma or allergic rhinitis - associations with warmer climate zone, dampness and mould at home, and outdoor PM and PM.

Sci Total Environ 2020 Dec 10;749:141580. Epub 2020 Aug 10.

XiangYa School of Public Health, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan, China; School of Energy Science and Engineering, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan, China. Electronic address:

This paper studied associations between reported common cold and home dampness and mould, cleaning habits and ventilation, climate and outdoor air pollution in China among young adults without asthma or allergic rhinitis. Parents of children attending day care in eight Chinese cities answered a questionnaire on their health and home environment (75% response rate). We restricted the population to subject without asthma or allergic rhinitis (N = 37,275). Temperature and air pollution data was obtained from monitoring stations. Associations were estimated by multilevel logistic regression. Totally 12.5% reported common cold (≥3 colds) and 1.6% frequent common cold (≥5 colds) in the past 12 months. Female gender (OR = 1.53; 95% CI 1.37-1.71), residents in southern China (OR = 1.89; 95% CI 1.16-3.07) and living in homes with water leakage (OR = 1.32; 95% CI 1.16-1.50), mould odour (OR = 1.48; 95% CI 1.28-1.72), indoor mould (OR = 1.47; 95% CI 1.28-1.70), condensation on window panes (OR = 1.42; 95% CI 1.32-1.52) and damp bed clothing (OR = 1.19; 95% CI 1.11-1.28) were associated with common cold. Having many signs of dampness increased ORs. Daily cleaning (OR = 0.91; 95% CI 0.85-0.97) and mechanical ventilation in kitchen or bathroom (OR = 0.75; 95% CI 0.64-0.89) were protective. Higher mean ambient temperature (OR = 1.11 per °C; 95% CI 1.02-1.21), PM (OR = 1.17 per 10 μg/m; 95% CI 1.14-1.21) and PM (OR = 1.28 per 10 μg/m; 95% CI 1.20-1.37) were associated with common cold. The association with particulate air pollution was stronger in southern China. Similar associations were found for frequent common cold. In conclusion, indoor dampness and mould, a warmer climate and PM and PM can be associated with reported common cold. Further intervention and prospective studies are needed to verify causality of observed association in this cross-sectional study.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.141580DOI Listing
December 2020

Furry pet-related wheeze and rhinitis in pre-school children across China: Associations with early life dampness and mould, furry pet keeping, outdoor temperature, PM and PM.

Environ Int 2020 11 11;144:106033. Epub 2020 Aug 11.

XiangYa School of Public Health, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan, China; School of Energy Science and Engineering, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan, China; School of Public Health, Zhengzhou University, Zhengzhou, Henan, China. Electronic address:

Background: Few Chinese population studies exist on early life risk factors for furry pet allergy.

Objectives: We studied childhood respiratory symptoms when in contact with furry pets in relation to early life exposure. Moreover, we studied similar environmental associations for rhinitis not related to furry pets.

Methods: Children aged 3-6 y from day care centres in seven Chinese cities participated (N = 39,782). Parents answered a questionnaire on home environment and children's health, including rhinoconjunctivitis and wheeze when in contact with furry pets, and diagnosed rhinitis. Prenatal and postnatal outdoor temperature, PM, PM, and NO were calculated using data from monitoring stations. Associations were estimated by multilevel logistic regression.

Results: Totally 2% had cats, 4% dogs, and 3.2% had rhinoconjunctivitis or wheeze when in contact with furry pets (FP symptoms). Moreover, 1.1% had furry pet related diagnosed rhinitis and 7.5% had diagnosed rhinitis not related to furry pets (other diagnosed rhinitis). Prenatal PM and PM, especially in second trimester, and a colder climate were risk factors for FP symptoms. ETS, dampness and mould, condensation on windows in wintertime, and cats and dog keeping were associated with FP symptoms. Breast feeding and frequent window opening were protective. Similar indoor associations were found for furry pet related diagnosed rhinitis. ETS, dampness and mould, window condensation, urbanization and mechanical exhaust ventilation were risk factors for other diagnosed rhinitis. Cooking with an electric stove and early life exposure to animals (cats, dogs, farm environment during pregnancy) were protective for diagnosed rhinitis not related to furry pets.

Conclusions: Prenatal outdoor PM and PM can be risk factors for symptoms suggestive of furry pet allergy. Early life dampness and mould can be risk factors for rhinitis related and not related to furry pets. Exposure to animals (cats, dogs, farm environment) may reduce diagnosed rhinitis not related to furry pets.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envint.2020.106033DOI Listing
November 2020

Necessity of personal sampling for exposure assessment on specific constituents of PM: Results of a panel study in Shanghai, China.

Environ Int 2020 08 17;141:105786. Epub 2020 May 17.

School of Public Health, Key Lab of Public Health Safety of the Ministry of Education and NHC Key Laboratory of Health Technology Assessment, Fudan University, Shanghai, China; Key Laboratory of Reproduction Regulation of National Population and Family Planning Commission, Shanghai Institute of Planned Research, Institute of Reproduction and Development, Fudan University, Shanghai, China. Electronic address:

Many epidemiological studies have evaluated the health risks of ambient fine particulate matter (PM). However, few studies have investigated the potential exposure misclassification caused by using ambient PM concentrations as proxy for individual exposure to PM in regions with high-level of air pollution. This study aimed to compare the differences between personal and ambient PM constituent concentrations, and to predict the personal exposure of sixteen PM constituents. We collected 141 72-h personal exposure filter samples from a panel of 36 healthy non-smoking college students in Shanghai, China. We then used the liner mixed effects models to predict personal constituent-specific exposure using ambient observations and several possible influencing factors including time-activity patterns, temporal variables, and meteorological conditions. The final model of each component was further evaluated by determination coefficient (R) and root mean square error (RMSE) from leave-one-out-cross-validation (LOOCV). We observed ambient concentrations were higher than personal concentrations for all PM components except for Mn, Fe, Ca, and V. Especially, ambient NH, As, and NO concentrations were 3.65, 5.65 and 7.33-fold higher than their corresponding personal concentrations, respectively. The ambient level was the strongest predictor of their corresponding personal PM components with the highest marginal R (R: 0.081 ~ 0.901), meteorological conditions (R: 0.000 ~ 0.357), time-activity pattern (R: 0.000 ~ 0.083) and temporal indicators (R: 0.031 ~ 0.562) were also important predictors. Our final models predicted at least 50% of the variance of all personal PM constituents and even over 90% for K, Pb, and SO. LOOCV analysis showed that R and RMSE ranged from 0.251 to 0.907 and 0.000 to 0.092 μg/m, respectively. Our results showed that ambient concentration of most PM constituents along with time-activity patterns, temporal variables, and meteorological conditions, could adequately predict personal exposure concentration. Prediction models of individual PM constituent may help to improve the accuracy of exposure measurement in future epidemiological studies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envint.2020.105786DOI Listing
August 2020

Ozone exposure leads to changes in airway permeability, microbiota and metabolome: a randomised, double-blind, crossover trial.

Eur Respir J 2020 09 3;56(3). Epub 2020 Sep 3.

School of Public Health, Key Lab of Public Health Safety of the Ministry of Education and NHC Key Lab of Health Technology Assessment, Fudan University, Shanghai, China

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1183/13993003.00165-2020DOI Listing
September 2020

Associations between household renovation and rhinitis among preschool children in China: A cross-sectional study.

Indoor Air 2020 09 14;30(5):827-840. Epub 2020 May 14.

School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Tianjin University, Tianjin, China.

During 2010-2012, we surveyed 40,010 3- to 6-year-old children in seven Chinese cities (Beijing, Taiyuan, Urumqi, Shanghai, Nanjing, Changsha, and Chongqing). Their parents reported information on household renovation, including the timing of renovation and the choice of materials for walls and floors in the child's room, and the incidence of their child's rhinitis. Multivariate and two-level (city-child) logistic regression analyses yielding adjusted odds ratios (AOR) with 95% confidence intervals were performed. Sensitivity analyses stratifying data for location and economic level were also performed. About 48.0% of the children had ever had allergic rhinitis, 41.2% had current allergic rhinitis, and 9.0% had had doctor-diagnosed rhinitis. Exposure to household renovation during early lifetime (birth to 1-year-old) had an AOR of 1.43 (1.04-1.9) for allergic rhinitis. The incidence of allergic rhinitis was significantly different in children exposed to different floor and wall covering materials. Floor or wall covering material composed of organic materials significantly increased the risk of childhood allergic rhinitis compared with tile flooring or lime wall covering. Oil paint had an AOR of 1.66 (1.28-2.14) for diagnosed rhinitis compared with lime wall covering. Adding new furniture the year before pregnancy was associated with an AOR of 1.18 (1.10-1.27) and 1.18 (1.11-1.25) for lifetime and current rhinitis. Solid wood or tiles/ceramic as floor materials, and using wallpaper, oil paint, or emulsion panels as wall materials were risk factors for doctor-diagnosed rhinitis. Sensitivity analyses showed that children living in southern or higher economic level China cities were more likely to have allergic rhinitis with household renovation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ina.12675DOI Listing
September 2020

Willingness to pay for staying away from haze: Evidence from a quasi-natural experiment in Xi'an.

J Environ Manage 2020 May 27;262:110301. Epub 2020 Feb 27.

Member of National Academy of Engineering of the U.S., Regents Professor, Mechanical Engineering Department, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, 55455, USA; School of Science and Engineering, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shenzhen, 518172, China. Electronic address:

Previous studies of the residents' willingness to pay (WTP) for air quality improvement are likely suffering various endogeneity biases. Exploiting the unique opportunity of a recent quasi-experiment operation of the world's first SFT (Smog Free Tower) in China's northwestern city Xi'an, this paper reliably calibrates local residents' WTP for less exposure to haze by analyzing the price responses of housings in the neighborhoods of SFT. The hedonic regression is applied in the DID (difference-in-difference) setting, with further assistances of the PSM (propensity score matching) method, quantile regression and placebo test. The regression results consistently suggest that housing price responded positively to the installment of the SFT, and the impact estimates are closely centered around 4%. The study also indicates high-priced housings response much more to the operation of the SFT than cheap-priced housings, suggesting uneven distribution of welfare gains of air quality improvement. A cost-benefit analysis of the SFT project indicates that the economic benefits of this project far outweigh the costs involved. The paper concludes with discussions of policy implications of this paper for environment governance.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2020.110301DOI Listing
May 2020

Effects of parental smoking and indoor tobacco smoke exposure on respiratory outcomes in children.

Sci Rep 2020 03 9;10(1):4311. Epub 2020 Mar 9.

Beijing Key Lab of Indoor Air Quality Evaluation and Control, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China.

The extensive literature has reported adverse effects on environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) on children's health. We aim to analyze associations of ETS with dry night cough, croup, pneumonia, and frequent common cold and to disentangle the effects of prenatal, infancy and childhood exposure by multilevel logistic regression. A cross-sectional study was conducted among 41,176 children aged 3-8 years in 8 major cities of China during 2010-2011, and obtained demographic information, smoke exposure information, and respiratory outcomes. Parents' smoking habit and indoor tobacco smoke odor were considered as two indicators of ETS. The prevalences of respiratory outcomes were 6.0% for croup, 9.5% for frequency common cold, 17.1% for dry night cough and 32.3% for pneumonia respectively in the study. The associations between respiratory outcomes and parental smoking were not obvious, while indoor tobacco smoke odor was clearly and strongly associated with most respiratory outcomes, with adjusted odds ratios ranging from 1.06 to 1.95. Both infancy and childhood exposure to tobacco smoke odor were independent risk factors, but infancy exposure had a higher risk. The results explore that ETS increased the risk of respiratory outcomes in children, highlighting the need for raising awareness about the detrimental effects of tobacco smoke exposure.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-60700-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7062804PMC
March 2020

Effects of filtered fresh air ventilation on classroom indoor air and biomarkers in saliva and nasal samples: A randomized crossover intervention study in preschool children.

Environ Res 2019 12 17;179(Pt A):108749. Epub 2019 Sep 17.

Department of Environmental Health, School of Public Health, Fudan University, Shanghai 200032, China; Key Laboratory of Public Health Safety of the Ministry of Education, NHC Key Laboratory of Health Technology Assessment (Fudan University), Shanghai Key Laboratory of Meteorology and Health, Shanghai 200032, China. Electronic address:

To evaluate the short-term effects of filtered fresh air ventilation system on classroom indoor air and biomarkers in saliva and nasal samples in preschool children, a randomized crossover study was conducted in a kindergarten in Shanghai, China in 2016. Two classrooms at the same grade (n = 43) were selected and fresh air ventilation systems (FAVS) with high efficiency particulate air filter (HEPA) were installed. In the first week, FAVS-HEPA was run in one classroom for 2 continuous school days and the other classroom was remained as usual with no use of FAVS-HEPA. After one week of wash-out, the ventilation modes exchanged between two classrooms and another 2 days of intervention were repeated. Real-time indoor and outdoor air pollution and climate factors (PM, Temp and relative humidity (R.H.)) were measured. Saliva and nasal internal mucosa samples were collected immediately at the end of each intervention scenario. Linear mixed-effect regression model was applied to evaluate the effects of intervention on children's health indicators controlling for age, gender, height, BMI and temperature. The results showed, with FAVS-HEPA, the classroom indoor fine particulate matter (PM)(29.1 ± 17.9 μg/m) was on average significantly lower than that without FAVS-HEPA (85.7 ± 43.2 μg/m). By regression analysis, each 10 μg/m decrease of indoor PM during the 8 school hours in the first intervention day was associated with an average of 1.76% (95% confidence interval (CI) 0.43-3.08%) increase in saliva lysozyme. This percentage increased to 2.41% (95%CI 0.52-4.26%) if related to the PM level in 16 school hours over 2 days of intervention. A total of 19 nasal bacterial taxa were lower in subjects exposed to FAVS-HEPA, compared to that with no use of FAVS-HEPA, despite the general bacteria diversity levels in nasal samples were not statistically different. Among others, Providencia species showed significant effects in mediating the associations between higher PM and lower lysozyme. In conclusion, using FAVS-HEPA was effective in decreasing the classroom indoor PM. Saliva lysozyme, as a non-specific immune biomarker, was significantly inversely associated with indoor PM. Certain nasal bacteria might play key roles in mediating PM exposure and children's lysozyme levels.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envres.2019.108749DOI Listing
December 2019

Personal Fine Particulate Matter Constituents, Increased Systemic Inflammation, and the Role of DNA Hypomethylation.

Environ Sci Technol 2019 Aug 1;53(16):9837-9844. Epub 2019 Aug 1.

School of Public Health, Key Lab of Public Health Safety of the Ministry of Education and NHC Key Laboratory of Health Technology Assessment , Fudan University , Shanghai , 200433 , China.

Limited evidence is available on the effects of various fine particulate matter (PM) components on inflammatory cytokines and DNA methylation. We examined whether 16 PM components are associated with changes in four blood biomarkers, that is, tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), soluble cluster of differentiation 40 ligand (sCD40L), soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (sICAM-1), and fibrinogen, as well as their corresponding DNA methylation levels in a panel of 36 healthy college students in Shanghai, China. We used linear mixed-effect models to evaluate the associations, with controls of potential confounders. We further conducted mediation analysis to evaluate the potential mediation effects of components on inflammatory markers through change in DNA methylation. We observed that several components were consistently associated with TNF-α and fibrinogen as well as their DNA hypomethylation. For example, an interquartile range increase in personal exposure to PM-lead (Pb) was associated with 65.20% (95% CI: 37.07, 99.10) increase in TNF-α and 2.66 (95% CI: 37.07, 99.10) decrease in methylation, 30.51% (95% CI: 0.72, 69.11) increase in fibrinogen and 1.25 (95% CI: 0.67, 1.83) decrease in methylation. PM components were significantly associated with methylation but not with sICAM-1 protein. DNA methylation mediated 19.89%-41.75% of the elevation in TNF-α expression by various PM constituents. Our findings provide clues that personal PM constituents exposure may contribute to increased systemic inflammation through DNA hypomethylation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.9b02305DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7092684PMC
August 2019

High prevalence of eczema among preschool children related to home renovation in China: A multi-city-based cross-sectional study.

Indoor Air 2019 09 11;29(5):748-760. Epub 2019 Jul 11.

School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Tianjin University, Tianjin, China.

We surveyed 40 010 three- to six-year-old children in seven Chinese cities (Beijing, Taiyuan, Urumqi, Shanghai, Nanjing, Changsha, and Chongqing) during 2010-2012 so as to investigate possible links between home renovation and childhood eczema. Their parents responded to questions on home renovation and childhood eczema. Multivariate and two-level (city-child) logistic regression analyses yielding odds ratios with 95% confidence intervals were performed. Sensitivity analyses stratifying data for region, climate, and income level were also performed. The prevalences of childhood eczema in children with different floor and wall covering materials were significantly different and were significantly higher with home renovation during early lifetime. Exposure to synthetic materials significantly increased the risk of childhood eczema by 20%-25%. The risks (AOR, 95% CI) of current eczema among children in families with solid wood flooring and oil paint wall covering were 1.25 (1.04-1.49) and 1.35 (1.14-1.60), respectively. Home renovation during pregnancy was related to children's lifetime and current eczema.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ina.12586DOI Listing
September 2019

Asthma, allergic rhinitis and eczema among parents of preschool children in relation to climate, and dampness and mold in dwellings in China.

Environ Int 2019 09 18;130:104910. Epub 2019 Jun 18.

Department of Medical Sciences, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden.

The main aim was to study associations between asthma, allergic rhinitis and eczema among adults across China and dampness and mold at home. Young adults (N = 40,279) in eight cities in China answered a questionnaire in 2010-2012 (response rate 75.0%). Data on asthma, allergic rhinitis, eczema and the home environment was assessed by the questionnaire. Climate data was obtained from China Meteorological Administration and the website of Weather Underground. Health associations were analyzed by two-level logistic regression models, adjusting for covariates. Totally 1.6% had asthma, 6.6% allergic rhinitis and 2.2% eczema. Mold odor was associated with asthma (OR = 1.90) and allergic rhinitis (OR = 1.25-1.44). Window pane condensation in winter was associated with asthma (OR = 1.39), allergic rhinitis (OR = 1.26-1.58) and eczema (OR = 1.36-1.77). Presence of mold spots or damp stains was related to asthma (OR = 1.58-2.49), allergic rhinitis (OR = 1.35-1.76) and eczema (OR = 1.47-1.70). Water damage was related to asthma (OR = 1.69-1.82), allergic rhinitis (OR = 1.40-1.45) and eczema (OR = 1.44-1.96). Damp bed clothing was related to asthma (OR = 1.23), allergic rhinitis (OR = 1.23) and eczema (OR = 1.35). A higher dampness score was associated with increased odds ratios for diseases. Those living in older buildings had more asthma (OR = 1.39-1.76) and allergic rhinitis (OR = 1.16-1.21). Those living in suburban or rural areas had less asthma, allergic rhinitis and eczema as compared to those living in urban areas (OR values from 0.24 to 0.66). Stronger health associations with dampness and mold were found in southern China and in newer buildings (constructed after 2005). In conclusion, dampness and mold at home can be risk factors for asthma, allergic rhinitis and eczema among adults in China. Living in older buildings can be risk factors for asthma or allergic rhinitis while living in less urbanized areas can be protective.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envint.2019.104910DOI Listing
September 2019

Home environment and health: Domestic risk factors for rhinitis, throat symptoms and non-respiratory symptoms among adults across China.

Sci Total Environ 2019 Sep 9;681:320-330. Epub 2019 May 9.

Department of Medical Sciences, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden.

Few studies exist from China on associations between home environment and adult health. We studied associations between home environment factors (other than dampness and mould) and rhinitis, throat and dermal symptoms and headache and fatigue among young parents in six cities across China (N = 36,541). They were recruited as parents from day care centers selected randomly and answered a questionnaire on medical symptoms and the home environment. Odds ratios (OR) were calculated by multilevel logistic regression adjusting for gender, atopy, smoking, home size and dampness/mould. Overall, 4.8% had skin symptoms 3.1% rhinitis, 2.8% eye, 4.1% throat symptoms, 3.0% headache and 13.9% had fatigue (all as weekly symptoms). Redecoration was associated with rhinitis, eye and skin symptoms, headache and fatigue. New furniture was associated with eye, throat and skin symptoms and fatigue. Gas cooking was associated with eye and throat symptoms, headache and fatigue. Biomass cooking was associated with eye and throat symptoms and headache. Burning incense was associated with eye, throat and skin symptoms, headache and fatigue. Presence of cockroaches and mosquitos or flies was associated with all six symptoms. Rats or mice were associated with eye and dermal symptoms. Cat keeping was associated with eye symptoms while dog keepers had less fatigue. Living near major roads was associated with rhinitis, eye, throat and skin symptoms and fatigue. Daily cleaning, a mechanical ventilation system in the kitchen or in the bathroom, living in older buildings and living in less urbanized areas were protective factors. In conclusion, urbanization, traffic exhaust, indoor emissions from redecoration and new furniture, gas cooking and air pollution from burning incense and biomass may cause dermal and mucosal symptoms, headache and fatigue among adults in China. Indoor animals (cats, mice/rats, cockroaches) were other risk factors. Daily cleaning, mechanical ventilation and living in older buildings can be protective.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.05.084DOI Listing
September 2019

Onset and remission of rhinitis among students in relation to the home and school environment-A cohort study from Northern China.

Indoor Air 2019 07 6;29(4):527-538. Epub 2019 May 6.

Institute of Environmental Science, Shanxi University, Taiyuan, China.

Few prospective studies exist on indoor and outdoor air pollution in relation to adolescent rhinitis. We studied associations between onset and remission of rhinitis among junior high school students in relation to the home and school environment. A 2-year questionnaire cohort study was performed among 1325 students (11-15 years) in eight schools in Taiyuan, Northern China. Climate and air pollution were measured by direct reading instruments and passive samplers inside and outside the schools at baseline. Associations were calculated by multilevel logistic regression. Two-year onset of rhinitis and weekly rhinitis were 26.7% and 13.1%, respectively. RH (P < 0.001), CO (P < 0.01) and PM (P < 0.01) in the classrooms, PM (P < 0.01) and NO (P < 0.05) outside the schools, and redecoration (OR = 2.25) and dampness/indoor mold at home (OR = 2.04) were associated with onset of weekly rhinitis. RH (P < 0.05) and CO (P < 0.05) in the classroom and dampness/indoor mold (OR = 0.67) and environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) at home (OR = 0.63) reduced remission of rhinitis. In conclusion, dampness/mold and chemical emissions from new materials at home can increase onset of rhinitis and ETS and dampness/mold can reduce the remission. PM , RH, CO , and NO at school can increase the onset, and RH and CO can reduce the remission of rhinitis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ina.12559DOI Listing
July 2019
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