Researchers from the Mount Sinai Institute for Exposomic Research are first to find ultrafine particles from traffic pollution influences asthma risk in U.S. children
Women who were highly exposed to ultra-fine particles in air pollution during their pregnancy were more likely to have children who developed asthma, according to a study published in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine and presented at the annual meeting of the American Thoracic Society in May. This is the first time asthma has been linked with prenatal exposure to this type of air pollution, which is named for its tiny size and which is not regulated or routinely monitored in the United States.
Slightly more than 18 percent of the children born to these mothers developed asthma in their preschool years, compared to 7 percent of children overall in the United States identified as having asthma by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“One reason ultra-fine particulates are not routinely monitored is that there have been a number of unique challenges to measuring them accurately. Fortunately, recent methods have been developed to provide such exposure data which allowed us to conduct this study,” said lead author Rosalind Wright, MD, MPH, Horace W. Goldsmith Professor in Children’s Health Research and Professor of Environmental Medicine and Public Health at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.