Landmark, MA, United States
Landmark, MA, United States

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PubMed | VA Boston Healthcare System and Harvard University
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Journal of the Air & Waste Management Association (1995) | Year: 2016

In order to study effects of ambient particulate matter (PM) it was previously necessary to have access to a comprehensive air monitoring network. However, there are locations in the world where PM levels are above generally accepted exposure standards but lack a monitoring infrastructure. This is true in Iraq and other locations in Southwest Asia and Afghanistan where U.S. and other coalition troops were deployed beginning in 2001. Since aerosol optical depth (AOD), determined by satellite, and visibility are both highly related to atmospheric PMThis study demonstrates the ability to utilize aerosol optical depth to successfully estimate visibility spatially and temporally in Southwest Asia and Afghanistan. This enables for the estimation of spatially resolved PM

Ren C.,Landmark Center West | Baccarelli A.,University of Milan | Wilker E.,Harvard University | Suh H.,Landmark Center West | And 4 more authors.
Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health | Year: 2010

Background: Many studies have shown that exposures to air pollution are associated with cardiovascular events, although the mechanism remains to be clarified. To identify whether exposures to ambient particles act on autonomic function via the lipid/endothelial metabolism pathway, whether effects of particulate matter <2.5 mm in aerodynamic diameter (PM2.5) on heart rate variability (HRV) were modified by gene polymorphisms related to those pathways were evaluated. Methods: HRV and gene data from the Normative Aging Study and PM2.5 from a monitor located a kilometre from the examination site were used. A mixed model was fitted to investigate the associations between PM2.5 and repeated measurements of HRV by gene polymorphisms of apolipoprotein E (APOE), lipoprotein lipase (LPL) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) adjusting for potential confounders chosen a priori. Results: A 10 μg/m3 increase in PM2.5 in the 2 days before the examination was associated with 3.8% (95% CI 0.2% to 7.4%), 7.8% (95 CI 0.4% to 15.3%) and 10.6% (95% CI 1.8% to 19.4%) decreases of the standard deviation of normal-to-normal intervals, the low frequency and the high frequency, respectively. Overall, carriers of wild-type APOE, LPL and VEGF genes had stronger effects of particles on HRV than those with hetero- or homozygous types. Variations of LPL-N291S, LPL-D9N and APOE-G113C significantly modified effects of PM2.5 on HRV. Conclusion: Associations between PM2.5 and HRV were modified by gene polymorphisms of APOE, LPL and VEGF; the biological metabolism remains to be identified.

Lee W.-C.,Landmark Center West | Catalano P.J.,Dana-Farber Cancer Institute | Yoo J.Y.,Seoul National University | Park C.J.,Seoul National University | Koutrakis P.,Landmark Center West
Environmental Science and Technology | Year: 2015

We validated the use of the mass balance model to determine the effectiveness of portable air purifiers in removing ultrafine (<0.10 μm) and submicrometer particles (0.10-0.53 μm) in an apartment. We evaluated two identical portable air purifiers, equipped with high efficiency particulate air filters, for their performance under three different air flow settings and three target air exchange rates: 0.60, 0.90, and 1.20 h-1. We subsequently used a mixed effects model to estimate the slope between the measured and modeled effectiveness by particle size. Our study showed that effectiveness was highly particle size-dependent. For example, at the lowest target air exchange rate, it ranged from 0.33 to 0.56, 0.51 to 0.75, and 0.60 to 0.81 for the three air purifier flow settings, respectively. Our findings suggested that filtration was the dominant removal mechanism for submicrometer particles, whereas deposition could play a more important role in ultrafine particle removal. We found reasonable agreement between measured and modeled effectiveness with size-resolved slopes ranging from 1.11 ± 0.06 to 1.25 ± 0.07 (mean ± SE), except for particles <35 nm. Our study design can be applied to investigate the performances of other portable air purifiers as well as the influences of various parameters on effectiveness in different residential settings. © 2015 American Chemical Society.

Son Y.-S.,Landmark Center West | Kim J.,Konkuk University | Kim J.-C.,Konkuk University
Plasma Chemistry and Plasma Processing | Year: 2014

This study investigated the decomposition characteristics of acetaldehyde using an electron beam. The removal efficiency (RE) in air, O2, N2 and He atmospheres at 10 kGy were 88, 89, 94 and 35 %, respectively. By varying the initial concentration (C0), G-values at 240 ppm (C0) were maintained from 6.4 to 7.0 molecules/100 eV, while the G-values at 34 and 60 ppm (C0) decreased from 4.5 to 1.1 and from 6.6 to 2.0 molecules/100 eV when the absorbed dose increased from 2.5 to 10 kGy. The RE of acetaldehyde at 96 % relative humidity was approximately 10-15 % higher than that at dry air when the absorbed doses were 5-10 kGy. Increasing the water supply did not provide additional improvement of the RE at 2.5 kGy. CO, CO2, O3 and trace VOC compounds such as C 2H4O2, C7H6O, C 6H6, C7H8 and C8H 10 were detected as by-products. © 2014 Springer Science+Business Media New York.

Villalonga-Olives E.,University of Gottingen | Villalonga-Olives E.,Landmark Center West | Kawachi I.,Landmark Center West | von Steinbuchel N.,University of Gottingen
Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health | Year: 2016

Human migration is not a new phenomenon, but it has changed significantly with the advance of globalization. We focus on differences in the published literature concerning migration and health (EU vs the US), centering specifically on reproductive health outcomes. We conducted a literature search in the Pubmed and Embase databases. We reviewed papers that contrast migrants to native-born populations and analyzed differences between countries as well as challenges for future research. The prevalence of low birthweight among migrants varies by the host country characteristics as well as the composition of migrants to different regions. The primary driver of migrant health is the migrant “regime” in different countries at specific periods of time. Future health outcomes of immigrants will depend on the societal characteristics (legal protections, institutions and health systems) of host countries. © 2016 Springer Science+Business Media New York

Ren C.,Landmark Center West | O'Neill M.S.,University of Michigan | Park S.K.,University of Michigan | Sparrow D.,Veterans Affairs Boston Healthcare System | And 4 more authors.
American Journal of Epidemiology | Year: 2011

Studies show that ambient temperature and air pollution are associated with cardiovascular disease and that they may interact to affect cardiovascular events. However, few epidemiologic studies have examined mechanisms through which ambient temperature may influence cardiovascular function. The authors examined whether temperature was associated with heart rate variability (HRV) in a Boston, Massachusetts, study population and whether such associations were modified by ambient air pollution concentrations. The population was a cohort of 694 older men examined between 2000 and 2008. The authors fitted a mixed model to examine associations between temperature and air pollution and their interactions with repeated HRV measurements, adjusting for covariates selected a priori on the basis of their previous studies. Results showed that higher ambient temperature was associated with decreases in HRV measures (standard deviation of normal-to-normal intervals, low-frequency power, and high-frequency power) during the warm season but not during the cold season. These warm-season associations were significantly greater when ambient ozone levels were higher (>22.3 ppb) but did not differ according to levels of ambient fine (≤2.5 μm) particulate matter. The authors conclude that temperature and ozone, exposures to both of which are expected to increase with climate change, might act together to worsen cardiovascular health and/or precipitate cardiovascular events via autonomic nervous system dysfunction. © 2011 The Author.

Alcantara C.,Landmark Center West | Abelson J.L.,University of Michigan | Gone J.P.,University of Michigan
Depression and Anxiety | Year: 2012

Background Nervios (PNRV) and ataque de nervios (ATQ) are culture-bound syndromes with overlapping symptoms of anxiety, depression, and dissociation, shown to have inconsistent associations to psychiatric disorder. Few studies test the basic assumption that PNRV and ATQ are uniformly linked to distress outcomes across Latina/o immigrant groups. This study examined: (a) the extent to which acculturative stress, Latino/US American acculturation, and anxious predisposition were associated with lifetime history of ATQ and PNRV, and (b) the extent to which ATQ and PNRV add incremental validity in explaining acculturative stress and psychological distress beyond measures of anxious predisposition. Method Participants (n = 82) included Mexican mothers who completed surveys on acculturation, trait anxiety, anxiety sensitivity, lifetime ATQ/PNRV, psychological distress, and acculturative stress. Results Lifetime PNRV, but not lifetime ATQ, was significantly predictive of psychological distress. PNRV was also linked to trait anxiety. Psychometric measures of anxious predisposition (trait anxiety and anxiety sensitivity) were more robust predictors of distress outcomes than lifetime history of ATQ/PNRV. Conclusion Inquiry into lifetime history of nervios may be a useful point of entry in talking to Mexican immigrant mothers about stress and distress. However, standard tools for assessing anxiety sensitivity and trait anxiety appear most useful in identifying and explaining the presence of psychological distress. Further research is needed to determine the cross-cultural relevance of trait anxiety and anxiety sensitivity, and its implications for the development of anxiety treatments that are effective across cultures. Depression and Anxiety 0:1-9, 2011. © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

Halonen J.I.,Harvard University | Halonen J.I.,University of Eastern Finland | Halonen J.I.,Landmark Center West | Zanobetti A.,Harvard University | And 5 more authors.
Environmental Health: A Global Access Science Source | Year: 2010

Background: Associations between ambient temperature and cardiovascular mortality are well established. This study investigated whether inflammation could be part of the mechanism leading to temperature-related cardiovascular deaths. Methods: The study population consisted of a cohort of 673 men with mean age of 74.6 years, living in the greater Boston area. They were seen for examination roughly every 4 years, and blood samples for inflammation marker analyses were drawn in 2000-2008 (total of 1254 visits). We used a mixed effects model to estimate the associations between ambient temperature and a variety of inflammation markers (C-reactive protein, white blood cell count, soluble Vascular Cell Adhesion Molecule-1, soluble Intercellular Adhesion Molecule-1, tumor necrosis factor alpha, and interleukins -1β, -6 and -8). Random intercept for each subject and several possible confounders, including combustion-related air pollution and ozone, were used in the models. Results: We found a 0 to 1 day lagged and up to 4 weeks cumulative responses in C-reactive protein in association with temperature. We observed a 24.9% increase [95% Confidence interval (CI): 7.36, 45.2] in C-reactive protein for a 5°C decrease in the 4 weeks' moving average of temperature. We observed similar associations also between temperature and soluble Intercellular Adhesion Molecule-1 (4.52%, 95% CI: 1.05, 8.10, over 4 weeks' moving average), and between temperature and soluble Vascular Cell Adhesion Molecule-1 (6.60%, 95% CI: 1.31, 12.2 over 4 weeks' moving average). Penalized spline models showed no deviation from linearity. There were no associations between temperature and other inflammation markers. Conclusions: Cumulative exposure to decreased temperature is associated with an increase in inflammation marker levels among elderly men. This suggests that inflammation markers are part of intermediate processes, which may lead to cold-, but not heat-, related cardiovascular deaths. © 2010 Halonen et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

Papapostolou V.,Harvard University | Papapostolou V.,Landmark Center West | Lawrence J.E.,Harvard University | Ferguson S.T.,Harvard University | And 4 more authors.
Air Quality, Atmosphere and Health | Year: 2013

Atmospheric photochemical reactions of vehicular primary emissions result in the formation of secondary organic aerosol (SOA). This is the first study that has investigated the toxicity of secondary particles based on fleet vehicular emissions. We developed methods for photochemical oxidation of traffic primary emissions to produce mixtures of primary and/or secondary particles suitable for animal exposures. The exposure generation system produced test atmospheres of primary (P), aged primary plus SOA (P + SOA), or SOA particles suitable for animal exposures. The system consists of (1) a sampling system to extract the traffic emissions from the plenum of a highway tunnel ventilation stack, (2) a photochemical chamber to simulate atmospheric aging, and (3) a nonselective diffusion denuder to remove gaseous pollutants prior to exposure. In the presence of traffic primary particles (P + SOA), a longer mean residence time resulted in a higher SOA yield. Higher baseline plenum primary particle mass concentration resulted in lower SOA yield. In the absence of primary particles (SOA), higher plenum gas concentrations resulted in higher SOA yield. Secondary aerosol was largely organic but contained some nitrate and sulfate. Formation of secondary aerosol is influenced significantly by reaction of primary gases with ·OH. The system (1) provides adequate flow and stable chamber output of P, P + SOA, and SOA for characterization and animal exposures and (2) generates reproducible exposure atmospheres of P, P + SOA, and SOA, all at consistent mass concentrations. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

Chen M.,Landmark Center West | Chang C.-H.,Landmark Center West | Tao L.,Landmark Center West | Lu C.,Landmark Center West
Pediatrics | Year: 2015

CONTEXT: There is an increasing concern about chronic low-level pesticide exposure during childhood and its influence on childhood cancers. OBJECTIVE: In this meta-analysis, we aimed to examine associations between residential childhood pesticide exposures and childhood cancers. DATA SOURCES: We searched all observational studies published in PubMed before February 2014 and reviewed reference sections of articles derived from searches. STUDY SELECTION: The literature search yielded 277 studies that met inclusion criteria. DATA EXTRACTION: Sixteen studies were included in the meta-analysis. We calculated effect sizes and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) by using a random effect model with inverse variance weights. RESULTS: We found that childhood exposure to indoor but not outdoor residential insecticides was associated with a significant increase in risk of childhood leukemia (odds ratio [OR] = 1.47; 95% CI, 1.26-1.72; I2 = 30%) and childhood lymphomas (OR = 1.43; 95% CI, 1.15-1.78; I2 = 0%). A significant increase in risk of leukemia was also associated with herbicide exposure (OR = 1.26; 95% CI, 1.10-1.44; I2 = 0%). Also observed was a positive but not statistically significant association between childhood home pesticide or herbicide exposure and childhood brain tumors. LIMITATIONS: The small number of studies included in the analysis represents a major limitation of the current analysis. CONCLUSIONS: Results from this meta-analysis indicated that children exposed to indoor insecticides would have a higher risk of childhood hematopoietic cancers. Additional research is needed to confirm the association between residential indoor pesticide exposures and childhood cancers. Meanwhile, preventive measures should be considered to reduce children's exposure to pesticides at home. Copyright © 2015 by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

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