Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Prenatal exposure to certain pollutants linked to behavioral problems in young children

Date:
April 12, 2011
Source:
Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health
Summary:
Mothers' exposure during pregnancy to pollutants created by the incomplete combustion of fossil fuels and other organic material may lead to behavioral problems in their children, according to a new study. Researchers found that within a sample of 215 children monitored from birth, those children with high levels of a pollution exposure marker in their cord blood had more symptoms of attention problems and anxiety/depression at ages 5 and 7 than did children with lower exposure.

Mothers' exposure during pregnancy to pollutants created by the incomplete combustion of fossil fuels and other organic material may lead to behavioral problems in their children, according to a new study. Researchers found that within a sample of 215 children monitored from birth, those children with high levels of a pollution exposure marker in their cord blood had more symptoms of attention problems and anxiety/depression at ages 5 and 7 than did children with lower exposure.

Related Articles


The study is published in Environmental Health Perspectives online April 12, 2011.

The researchers measured a biologic marker or "fingerprint" of exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) and other combustion-related pollutants in newborns' cord blood. When inhaled by the mother during pregnancy, these pollutants can be transferred across the placenta and bind to the DNA of the fetus, forming "adducts" in blood and other tissues and providing a biologic measure of pollutant exposure. Mothers completed a detailed assessment of their child's behavior.

In urban air, traffic emissions are a dominant source of the pollutants measured in the study. The authors accounted for other sources such as environmental tobacco smoke and diet in their analyses. None of the mothers in the study were smokers.

The study by researchers at the Columbia Center for Children's Environmental Health (CCCEH) and the Institute of Cancer Research in England is the first to examine the behavioral effects of prenatal exposure to these air pollutants in children using a biologic marker.

"The results are of potential concern since attention problems and anxiety and depression may affect subsequent academic performance as well as peer relationships and other aspects of societal functioning," said Dr. Frederica Perera, the study's lead author and Center Director. "Fortunately, it is possible to reduce these air pollutants through currently available pollution controls, energy efficiency, and alternative energy sources."

Funding for the study was provided by NIEHS, the EPA and private foundations.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Frederica P. Perera, Shuang Wang, Julia Vishnevetsky, Bingzhi Zhang, Kathleen J. Cole, Deliang Tang, Virginia Rauh, David H. Phillips. PAH/Aromatic DNA Adducts in Cord Blood and Behavior Scores in New York City Children. Environmental Health Perspectives, 2011; DOI: 10.1289/ehp.1002705

Cite This Page:

Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health. "Prenatal exposure to certain pollutants linked to behavioral problems in young children." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 April 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110412101332.htm>.
Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health. (2011, April 12). Prenatal exposure to certain pollutants linked to behavioral problems in young children. ScienceDaily. Retrieved January 29, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110412101332.htm
Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health. "Prenatal exposure to certain pollutants linked to behavioral problems in young children." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110412101332.htm (accessed January 29, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Binge-Watching TV Linked To Loneliness

Binge-Watching TV Linked To Loneliness

Newsy (Jan. 29, 2015) Researchers at University of Texas at Austin found a link between binge-watching TV shows and feelings of loneliness and depression. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Signs You Might Be The Passive Aggressive Friend

Signs You Might Be The Passive Aggressive Friend

BuzzFeed (Jan. 28, 2015) "No, I&apos;m not mad. Why, are you mad?" Video provided by BuzzFeed
Powered by NewsLook.com
City Divided: A Look at Model Schools in the TDSB

City Divided: A Look at Model Schools in the TDSB

The Toronto Star (Jan. 27, 2015) Model schools are rethinking how they engage with the community to help enhance the lives of the students and their parents. Video provided by The Toronto Star
Powered by NewsLook.com
Man Saves Pennies For 65 Years

Man Saves Pennies For 65 Years

Rooftop Comedy (Jan. 26, 2015) A man in Texas saved every penny he found for 65 years, and this week he finally cashed them in. Bank tellers at Prosperity Bank in Slaton, Texas were shocked when Ira Keys arrived at their bank with over 500 pounds of loose pennies stored in coffee cans. After more than an hour of sorting and counting, it turned out the 81 year-old was in possession of 81,600 pennies, or $816. And he&apos;s got more at home! Video provided by Rooftop Comedy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins