Ambient and Microenvironmental Particles and Exhaled Nitric Oxide Before and After a Group Bus Trip

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Ambient and Microenvironmental Particles and Exhaled Nitric Oxide Before and After a Group Bus Trip

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Title: Ambient and Microenvironmental Particles and Exhaled Nitric Oxide Before and After a Group Bus Trip
Author: Adar, Sara Dubowsky; Adamkiewicz, Gary; Gold, Diane R.; Schwartz, Joel David; Coull, Brent Andrew; Suh MacIntosh, Helen H.

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Citation: Adar, Sara Dubowsky, Gary Adamkiewicz, Diane R. Gold, Joel Schwartz, Brent A. Coull, and Helen Suh. 2007. Ambient and microenvironmental particles and exhaled nitric oxide before and after a group bus trip. Environmental Health Perspectives 115(4): 507-512.
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Abstract: Objectives: Airborne particles have been linked to pulmonary oxidative stress and inflammation. Because these effects may be particularly great for traffic-related particles, we examined associations between particle exposures and exhaled nitric oxide (FENO) in a study of 44 senior citizens, which involved repeated trips aboard a diesel bus. Methods: Samples of FENO collected before and after the trips were regressed against microenvironmental and ambient particle concentrations using mixed models controlling for subject, day, trip, vitamins, collection device, mold, pollen, room air nitric oxide, apparent temperature, and time to analysis. Although ambient concentrations were collected at a fixed location, continuous group-level personal samples characterized microenvironmental exposures throughout facility and trip periods. Results: In pre-trip samples, both microenvironmental and ambient exposures to fine particles were positively associated with FENO. For example, an interquartile increase of 4 μg/m3 in the daily microenvironmental PM2.5 concentration was associated with a 13% [95% confidence interval (CI), 2–24%) increase in FENO. After the trips, however, FENO concentrations were associated pre-dominantly with microenvironmental exposures, with significant associations for concentrations measured throughout the whole day. Associations with exposures during the trip also were strong and statistically significant with a 24% (95% CI, 15–34%) increase in FENO predicted per interquartile increase of 9 μg/m3 in PM2.5. Although pre-trip findings were generally robust, our post-trip findings were sensitive to several influential days. Conclusions: Fine particle exposures resulted in increased levels of FENO in elderly adults, suggestive of increased airway inflammation. These associations were best assessed by microenvironmental exposure measurements during periods of high personal particle exposures.
Published Version: doi:10.1289/ehp.9386
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