Research Projects

Project at a Glance

Project Status: active

Title: Peripheral blood gene expression in subjects with coronary artery disease and exposure to particulate air pollutant components and size fractions

Principal Investigator / Author(s): Delfino, Ralph

Contractor: UC Irvine

Contract Number: 09-341


Research Program Area: Health & Exposure

Topic Areas: Health Effects of Air Pollution


Research Summary:

Epidemiological studies have shown that exposure to ambient air pollution, especially particulate matter (PM2.5), is associated with increases in cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. Yet the pathophysiological mechanisms and PM2.5 components that may be associated with the epidemiologic results are unclear. Elevated PM concentrations have been associated with increased levels of circulating biomarkers of inflammation and thrombosis in cohort panel studies (Pope et al. 2004; Riediker et al. 204; Ruckerl et al. 2006; Schwartz et al. 2001, Delfino et al 2008). However, information is lacking on whether gene expression in biological pathways relevant to PM exposure effects is associated with urban PM exposure in humans with potentially increased cardiac risk. Furthermore, there is limited data on the particle sources, components, or size fractions that may be most relevant to air pollution impacts since most epidemiologic studies have relied on ambient PM mass. To address these research gaps, the proposed study aims to analyze the possible relationship of gene expression data with data from particle composition and sources. The main objectives of this proposed research are to determine the organic composition of previously collected accumulation mode PM2.5, to conduct an extensive source apportionment study which will include exposures already measured, and finally, to analyze the relationship of the characterized exposures to gene expression in the study subjects. The present study will leverage the data from an investigation referred to as the Cardiovascular Health and Air Pollution Study (CHAPS) as well as information from the National Institute of Health funded study of gene expression in this same cohort. The proposed work is expected to show differences in gene expression responses by PM composition and sources. This data will be important for developing more targeted pollution control strategies because biological outcomes will be linked to ambient pollutant sources that have major contributions to personal and indoor PM levels.


 

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