Innovations

Study links specific outdoor air pollutants to asthma attacks in urban children

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Moderate levels of two outdoor air pollutants, ozone and fine particulate matter, are associated with non-viral asthma attacks in children and adolescents who live in low-income urban areas, a study has found. The study also identifies associations between exposure to the two pollutants and molecular changes in the children’s airways during non-viral asthma attacks, suggesting potential mechanisms for those attacks. The observational study is one of the first to link elevated levels of specific outdoor air pollutants in particular urban locations to distinct changes in the airways during asthma attacks not triggered by respiratory viruses, according to the investigators. The findings were published today in the journal The Lancet Planetary Health.

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