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Air Pollution Exposure Assessment in Eight Swiss Areas

English title Air Pollution Exposure Assessment in Eight Swiss Areas
Applicant Künzli Nino
Number 135673
Funding scheme Project funding (special)
Research institution Department of Epidemiology and Public Health Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute
Institution of higher education University of Basel - BS
Main discipline Methods of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine
Start/End 01.06.2011 - 31.05.2015
Approved amount 331'000.00
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All Disciplines (2)

Discipline
Methods of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine
Climatology. Atmospherical Chemistry, Aeronomy

Keywords (8)

air pollution; particulate matter; nanoparticle; ultrafine particle; NO2; exposure science; large nested project; SAPALIDA Cohort on Healthy Aging

Lay Summary (English)

Lead
Lay summary

Background. The Swiss Cohort Study on Air Pollution and Lung and Heart Diseases in Adults (SAPALDIA) is a unique nearly 20-year old cohort study, investigating the health effects of air pollution. It was incepted in 1991 (SAP1) with baseline health examination in 8 areas of 9600 participants, with a first follow up in 2002-03 (SAP2) and a second one in 2010-11 (SAP3). In past, SAPALDIA has strongly contributed in understanding the association between respiratory and cardiovascular health effects with regulated air pollutants, PM10 and NO2. Partly, it was possible due to the state of the art air pollution exposure models that were developed for these pollutants. As the second follow up (SAP3) has expanded on the measured health outcomes, it is in a state where improved exposure assessment is pivotal to further advance our understanding on health effects of air pollution on Swiss population. In fact, SAPALDIA is also participating in a European Study of Cohorts for Air Pollution Effects (ESCAPE), a collaboration of 34 European cohort studies for quantification of effects of long-term exposure to outdoor air pollution on human health.

Why this study needed? Recent findings in SAPLADIA and elsewhere in North American and European studies suggest even stronger associations for traffic related air pollutants. These studies have indicated that concentrations of traffic exhaust pollutants (e.g. ultrafine particles, NO2 and soot) vary greatly within 200m of major roads, a centrally located monitoring site can not capture the high exposures of SAP3 subjects living near busy roads. SAP2 has advanced air pollution exposure science by conducting innovative exposure modeling across 8 geographically diverse areas in Switzerland using dispersion modeling and NO2 land use regression modeling. However, exposure to specific traffic related pollutants such as ultrafine particles and PM chemical components was not assessed. Furthermore, exposures were only assessed at outdoor home addresses without taking into account outdoor exposure at workplaces or indoor exposure at homes.

What this study will do? This study will capitalize on air pollution exposure information gathered in earlier studies and existing SAPALDIA-ESCAPE collaboration and expand exposure science research to focus on characterizing spatial variability of size-segregated outdoor and indoor PM viz. ultrafine particles measured as particle number concentration (PNC), PM2.5, PM10, together with NO2 and PM2.5 chemical constituents including soot, trace metals and inorganic ions. The overarching aim of the proposed study is to provide the estimates of individual long-term outdoor traffic-related air pollution exposures of the study participants to complement the health data currently assessed. To that effect, outdoor and indoor exposure models will be built for the key pollutants in different SAPALDIA areas. The study, for very first time in any epidemiological study, will investigate the spatial variation of outdoor PNC within and across areas as well as its short- and long-term relationship with indoor PNC exposure.

How the study will be conducted? The study will be conducted in all SAPALDIA areas for NO2 and four (of the eight) areas for PM over a period of 2 years. 2-week NO2 measurements will be made at 40 outdoor locations in each study area over three different seasons. In four key areas, 20 out of the 40 locations will be monitored for indoor and outdoor PNC, PM2.5, PM10, and indoor NO2. PM2.5 filters will be analyzed for their chemical composition such as heavy metals and inorganic ions and soot. Individual time-activity patterns i.e. where the participants spent their time during monitoring will be collected and additionally home indoor activities and ventilation characteristics will be gathered.

Air pollution exposure models will be built for outdoor air pollutants using statistical methods utilizing geographic information system obtained parameters (such as distance from nearest main road, traffic volume, population density etc,) land-use, meteorological and dispersion model estimates predictor variables. Indoor exposure models will be built using statistical methods utilizing outdoor pollutant concentrations and collected information on home ventilation and indoor sources. Models will be built for biweekly as well as annual average exposures for all key pollutants of interest including ultrafine particles.

What will be the implications? The validated models will then be applied to the SAP3 cohort study to derive participants’ individual exposure to traffic-related air pollution. The study will advance exposure science by gaining understanding of the relationship between indoor, outdoor and personal ultrafine particle exposures in the general population. The subsequent modeling results will provide long-term ultrafine particle exposure estimates for the first time in the air pollution cohort studies for health assessment. In addition, PM2.5 and PM10 measurements will add to the existing knowledge of outdoor spatial distribution of long-term air pollution exposures. Thus by providing traffic-related novel key air pollution exposure data for each SAP3 participant, the study will make a fundamental contribution to SAPALDIA to investigate key exposure-health effect research questions. From a policy perspective, the study will also contribute to the discussion about whether and how to regulate particles of different size fractions in Switzerland and EU at large.

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 21.02.2013

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Publications

Publication
Particulate Matter and Subclinical Atherosclerosis: Associations between Different Particle Sizes and Sources with Carotid Intima-Media Thickness in the SAPALDIA Study.
Aguilera Inmaculada, Dratva Julia, Caviezel Seraina, Burdet Luc, de Groot Eric, Ducret-Stich Regina E, Eeftens Marloes, Keidel Dirk, Meier Reto, Perez Laura, Rothe Thomas, Schaffner Emmanuel, Schmit-Trucksäss Arno, Tsai Ming-Yi, Schindler Christian, Künzli Nino, Probst-Hensch Nicole (2016), Particulate Matter and Subclinical Atherosclerosis: Associations between Different Particle Sizes and Sources with Carotid Intima-Media Thickness in the SAPALDIA Study., in Environmental health perspectives, 1-28.
Ambient ultrafine particle levels at residential and reference sites in urban and rural Switzerland.
Meier Reto, Eeftens Marloes, Aguilera Inmaculada, Phuleria Harish C, Ineichen Alex, Davey Mark, Ragettli Martina S, Fierz Martin, Schindler Christian, Probst-Hensch Nicole, Tsai Ming-Yi, Künzli Nino (2015), Ambient ultrafine particle levels at residential and reference sites in urban and rural Switzerland., in Environmental Science & Technology, 49(5), 2709-15.
Development of land use regression models for nitrogen dioxide, ultrafine particles, lung deposited surface area, and four other markers of particulate matter pollution in the Swiss SAPALDIA regions.
Eeftens Marloes, Meier Reto, Schindler Christian, Aguilera Inmaculada, Phuleria Harish, Ineichen Alex, Davey Mark, Ducret-Stich Regina, Keidel Dirk, Probst-Hensch Nicole, Künzli Nino, Tsai Ming-Yi (2015), Development of land use regression models for nitrogen dioxide, ultrafine particles, lung deposited surface area, and four other markers of particulate matter pollution in the Swiss SAPALDIA regions., in Environmental health : a global access science source, 15, 53-53.
Differences in indoor versus outdoor concentrations of ultrafine particles, PM2.5, PMabsorbance and NO2 in Swiss homes.
Meier Reto, Eeftens Marloes, Phuleria Harish C, Ineichen Alex, Corradi Elisabetta, Davey Mark, Fierz Martin, Ducret-Stich Regina E, Aguilera Inmaculada, Schindler Christian, Rochat Thierry, Probst-Hensch Nicole, Tsai Ming-Yi, Künzli Nino (2015), Differences in indoor versus outdoor concentrations of ultrafine particles, PM2.5, PMabsorbance and NO2 in Swiss homes., in Journal of exposure science & environmental epidemiology, 1-7.
Land use regression models for crustal and traffic-related PM2.5 constituents in four areas of the SAPALDIA study.
Aguilera Inmaculada, Eeftens Marloes, Meier Reto, Ducret-Stich Regina E, Schindler Christian, Ineichen Alex, Phuleria Harish C, Probst-Hensch Nicole, Tsai Ming-Yi, Künzli Nino (2015), Land use regression models for crustal and traffic-related PM2.5 constituents in four areas of the SAPALDIA study., in Environmental research, 140, 377-384.
Modeling indoor air pollution of outdoor origin in homes of SAPALDIA subjects in Switzerland
Meier Reto, Schindler Christian, Eeftens Marloes, Aguilera Inmaculada, Ducret-Stich Regina E., Ineichen Alex, Davey Mark, Phuleria Harish C, Probst-Hensch Nicole, Tsai Ming-Yi, Künzli Nino (2015), Modeling indoor air pollution of outdoor origin in homes of SAPALDIA subjects in Switzerland, in Environment International, 82, 85-91.
Spatial and temporal variability of ultrafine particles, NO2, PM2.5, PM2.5 absorbance, PM10 and PMcoarse in Swiss study areas
Eeftens Marloes, Phuleria Harish C, Meier Reto, Aguilera Inmaculada, Corradi Elisabetta, Davey Mark, Ducret-Stich Regina E, Fierz Martin, Gehrig Robert, Ineichen Alex, Keidel Dirk, Probst-Hensch Nicole, Ragettli Martina S., Schindler, Christian, Künzli Nino, Tsai Ming-Yi (2015), Spatial and temporal variability of ultrafine particles, NO2, PM2.5, PM2.5 absorbance, PM10 and PMcoarse in Swiss study areas, in Atmospheric Environment, 111, 60-70.
Spatial variation of PM2.5, PM10, PM2.5 absorbance and PMcoarse concentrations between and within 20 European study areas and the relationship with NO2 – Results of the ESCAPE project
Eeftens Marloes (2012), Spatial variation of PM2.5, PM10, PM2.5 absorbance and PMcoarse concentrations between and within 20 European study areas and the relationship with NO2 – Results of the ESCAPE project, in Atmospheric Environment, 62, 303-313.
Variation of NO2 and NOx concentrations between and within 36 European study areas: results from the ESCAPE study
Cyrys Josef (2012), Variation of NO2 and NOx concentrations between and within 36 European study areas: results from the ESCAPE study, in Atmospheric Environment, 62, 374-390.

Collaboration

Group / person Country
Types of collaboration
Various cantonal air monitoirng agencies Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
EMPA Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
BAFU Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
ESCAPE Netherlands (Europe)
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure
FHNW, Windisch Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
Swiss Aerosol Group Meeting Talk given at a conference Ambient ultrafine particle levels at residential and reference sites in urban and rural Switzerland 10.11.2014 Bern, Switzerland Tsai Ming-Yi; Künzli Nino; Meier Reto;
26th Annual meeting of International Society of Environmental Epidemiology (ISEE) Talk given at a conference Indoor and outdoor concentrations of ultrafine particles, PM2.5, black smoke and NO2 in selected homes of SAPALDIA subjects in Switzerland 24.08.2014 Seattle, United States of America Meier Reto; Künzli Nino;
18th ETH-Conference on Combustion Generated Nanoparticles Talk given at a conference Indoor and outdoor concentrations of ultrafine particles, PM2.5, PMabsorbance, and NO2 in selected homes of SAPALDIA subjects in Switzerland 22.06.2014 Zürich, Switzerland Künzli Nino; Tsai Ming-Yi; Meier Reto;
Environment and Health Conference (ISEE, ISES, ISIAQ combined annual meeting) Talk given at a conference SEASONAL AND SPATIAL VARIATION OF PARTICULATE MASS AND NITROGEN DIOXIDE CONCENTRATION IN EIGHT SWISS AREAS 19.09.2013 Basel, Switzerland Ineichen Alex;
Environment and Health Conference (ISEE, ISES, ISIAQ combined annual meeting) Talk given at a conference SPATIOTEMPORAL VARIATION OF PARTICLE NUMBER AND SURFACE AREA CONCENTRATION IN FOUR SWISS AREAS AND ITS RELATIONSHIP WITH MASS MEASUREMENTS 19.08.2013 Basel, Switzerland Meier Reto;
Swiss Public Health Conference Poster Spatiotemporal variation of particle number and surface area concentration in four Swiss areas and its relationship with mass measurements 15.08.2013 Zurich, Switzerland Tsai Ming-Yi;
17th ETH Combustion Generated Nanoparticle Conference (ETH-CGN) Poster Correlation between Traffic-Related Ultrafine Particles, Noise and Traffic Flow in the City of Basel 23.06.2013 Zurich, Switzerland Corradi Elisabetta;
Annual meeting of International Society of Exposure Sciences (ISES) Talk given at a conference Spatio-temporal variation of particle number concentrations and mean particle number size distributions in a Swiss urban city 23.10.2011 Baltimore, MD, USA, United States of America Tsai Ming-Yi;
15th ETH Combustion Generated Nanoparticle Conference (ETH-CGN) Talk given at a conference Insights into the Spatial and Temporal Distribution of UFP from Swiss Health Studies 26.06.2011 Zurich, Switzerland, Switzerland Tsai Ming-Yi;


Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
177506 SAPALDIA 5 - Cohort on Healthy Aging 01.04.2018 Cohort Studies Large
148470 SAPALDIA Cohort on Healthy Aging 01.04.2014 Cohort Studies Large
108796 Swiss Cohort Study on Air Pollution and Lung and Heart Diseases in Adults (SAPALDIA) 01.04.2006 Cohort Studies Large

Abstract

1. Summary of the research plan The Swiss Cohort Study on Air Pollution and Lung and Heart Diseases in Adults (SAPALDIA3 or S3) is currently funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation for a second follow-up with expanded cardiovascular assessments that has started in January 2010 and will be running until spring 2011. As a unique nearly 20-year old cohort study, it is at a point in time where improved exposure assessment is pivotal to uncovering hidden health effects and answering novel research questions. SAPALDIA is also participating in a European Study of Cohorts for Air Pollution Effects (ESCAPE), a collaboration of 34 European cohort studies for quantification of effects of long-term exposure to outdoor air pollution on human health. As recent studies have indicated that concentrations of traffic exhaust pollutants (NO2 and soot) vary greatly within 200m of major roads, a centrally located monitoring site can not capture the high exposures of S3 subjects living near busy roads. SAPALDIA2 has advanced air pollution exposure science by conducting innovative exposure modeling across 8 geographically diverse areas in Switzerland using dispersion modeling and NO2 land use regression modeling. However, exposure to specific traffic related pollutants such as ultrafine particles and PM chemical components was not assessed. Furthermore, exposures were only assessed at outdoor home addresses without taking into account outdoor exposure at workplaces or indoor exposure at homes. This study will capitalize on information gathered in SAPALDIA-ESCAPE and expand research collaboration to focus on characterizing spatial variability of size-segregated outdoor and indoor PM viz. ultrafine particles measured as particle number concentration (PNC), PM2.5, PM10, NO2 and PM2.5 chemical constituents including soot, trace metals and inorganic ions. The overarching aim of the proposed study is to provide the estimates of individual long-term outdoor as well as personal traffic-related air pollution exposures of the cohort participants to complement the health data currently assessed. To that effect, we aim to derive area-specific outdoor and indoor exposure models of the key pollutants in different SAPALDIA areas. Another focus of the study, for the very first time in any epidemiological study, is to investigate the spatial variation of outdoor PNC within and across areas as well as its short- and long-term relationship with indoor and personal PNC exposure. The study will be conducted in all SAPALDIA areas for NO2 and four (of the eight) areas for PM over a period of 2 years. Biweekly NO2 measurements will be made at 40 outdoor locations in each study area over three different seasons. In four key areas, 20 out of the 40 locations will be monitored for indoor and outdoor PM2.5, PM10, PNC, and indoor NO2. PM2.5 filters will be analyzed for trace metals and inorganic ions composition and soot (measured as Black Smoke). A selected subset of subjects from the selected homes will be recruited for 2-day personal PNC measurements. Additionally, individual time-location-activity patterns including home indoor activities and ventilation characteristics will be collected to characterize PM exposures. Area-specific multiple linear regression models will be built for outdoor traffic-related air pollution exposures using geographic, land-use, meteorological and dispersion estimates predictor variables. Indoor exposure models will be built using multiple regression methods utilizing outdoor pollutant concentrations and home characteristics. Models will be built for biweekly as well as annual average exposures of PNC, PM2.5, PM10, soot, selected PM2.5 trace elements and NO2. In addition, spatio-temporal short-term PNC exposure models will be built using similar methods. Finally, the validated models will be applied to the S3 cohort study to derive participants’ individual exposure to traffic-related air pollution. This study will thus develop area-specific outdoor and indoor exposure models to capture the within area variability in air pollution exposure, thereby refining individual estimates of current and historical exposures to air pollutants and increasing the potential and power of detecting respective health effects in the SAPALDIA cohort.
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