Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Pregnant mothers at risk from air pollution, California study suggests

Date:
October 7, 2011
Source:
BioMed Central
Summary:
A California-based study has looked in detail at air quality and the impact of traffic-related air pollution on premature birth. Results from the study show that traffic-related air pollution, especially polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, is associated with up to a 30 percent increase in premature births, and that seasonal changes and vicinity to the coast affected concentration of toxic pollutants in the air.

A Californian-based study has looked in detail at air quality and the impact of traffic-related air pollution on premature birth. Published in BioMed Central's open access journal Environmental Health, results from this study show that traffic-related air pollution, especially polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), is associated with up to a 30% increase in premature births, and that seasonal changes and vicinity to the coast affected concentration of toxic pollutants in the air.

The study, based at the University of California, looked at 100,000 births, within a five mile radius of air quality monitoring stations. The study evaluated births spanning a 22 month period from June 2004, and used information provided by the California Department of Health about the births and the mothers, in addition to air pollution information from monitoring stations which measure concentrations of airborne toxic pollutants.

The researchers were able to analyse and compare exposures using three different information sources: government "criteria pollutant" monitoring stations (including carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, ozone, and fine particulate matter), a traffic pollution model (Land Use Regression), and data about toxic chemicals collected by the South Coast Air Quality Management District. Once integrated, these data provided a new level of detail about the concentrations and location of individual pollutants. All statistical models were adjusted for maternal age, race/ethnicity, education and parity.

Some pollutants were area specific, relating to industry and urbanization. However, overall exposure to critical pollutants such as PAH resulted in up to a 30% increase in the risk of premature birth. Other toxic substances, such as benzene and fine particulate matter from diesel fumes were associated with a 10% increase, while ammonium nitrate fine particles were associated with a 21% increase in premature birth. Concentrations of these pollutants were higher in winter and lower in coastal areas, indicating that local weather patterns played an important part in the dispersal of pollutants.

Dr Beate Ritz said, "Air pollution is known to be associated with low birth weight and premature birth. Our results show that traffic-related PAH are of special concern as pollutants, and that PAH sources besides traffic contributed to premature birth. The increase in premature birth risk due to ammonium nitrate particles suggests secondary pollutants are also negatively impacting the health of unborn babies. To reduce the effects of these pollutants on public health, it is important that accurate modeling of local and regional spatial and temporal air pollution be incorporated into pollution policies."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BioMed Central. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Michelle Wilhelm, Jo Kay Ghosh, Jason Su, Myles Cockburn, Michael Jerrett, Beate Ritz. Traffic-related air toxics and preterm birth: a population-based case-control study in Los Angeles County, California. Environmental Health, 2011; 10: 89 DOI: 10.1186/1476-069X-10-89

Cite This Page:

BioMed Central. "Pregnant mothers at risk from air pollution, California study suggests." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 October 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/10/111007073218.htm>.
BioMed Central. (2011, October 7). Pregnant mothers at risk from air pollution, California study suggests. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/10/111007073218.htm
BioMed Central. "Pregnant mothers at risk from air pollution, California study suggests." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/10/111007073218.htm (accessed August 22, 2014).

Share This




More Earth & Climate News

Friday, August 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Microbrewery Chooses Special Can for Its Beer

Microbrewery Chooses Special Can for Its Beer

AP (Aug. 22, 2014) — Aluminum giant, Novelis, has partnered with Red Hare Brewing Company to introduce the first certified high-content recycled beverage can. (Aug. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Farm Resurgence Grows With Younger Crowd

Farm Resurgence Grows With Younger Crowd

AP (Aug. 22, 2014) — New England farms are seeing a surge in younger farm hands as the 'buy local' food movement grows across the country. (Aug. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
California Drought Stings Honeybees, Beekeepers

California Drought Stings Honeybees, Beekeepers

AP (Aug. 21, 2014) — California's record drought is hurting honey supplies and raising prices for consumers. The lack of rainfall means fewer crops and wildflowers that provide the nectar bees need to make honey. (Aug. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Thousands Of Species Found In Lake Under Antarctic Ice

Thousands Of Species Found In Lake Under Antarctic Ice

Newsy (Aug. 20, 2014) — A U.S. team found nearly 4,000 species in a subglacial lake that hasn't seen sunlight in millennia, showing life can thrive even under the ice. Video provided by Newsy
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:
from the past week

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